Ocean Spray makes a splash by relying on Facebook to launch its new sparkling juice product line

  • 25 Feb 2011 11:50 AM
    Message # 533002
    If you can’t get enough friends the old-fashioned way, why not bribe them with cans of sparkling juice? The move seemed to work for Ocean Spray: The Lakeville-based juice cooperative has more than 100,000 fans on Facebook, thanks in part to a promotion in which it gave away its new sparkling juice drinks to Facebook users who “liked” the company on the social networking site.

    Hundreds of people sounded off on Facebook’s page this week, either in jubilation over winning some free juice or in disappointment over missing their shot after supplies ran out.

    You’ve got to give Ocean Spray credit for making a splash. The new product is aimed at building on the success of its popular blueberry drinks (which first became commercially available in some markets in 2009, and then widely available in 2010).

    The sparkling juice drinks are presented as a healthy beverage alternative, although the calorie count of 90 calories for 8.4 ounces is just below what’s available in a Coke or a Pepsi. The sparkling juices come in cranberry and pomegranate-blueberry flavors, and diet versions with 10 calories per can are available as well.

    A company spokeswoman says the sparkling juices are sweetened with natural fruit juices, and sucralose is used for the diet drinks. The drinks will arrive in stores in the 8.4-ounce cans only, at least at first, in four-packs, according to the spokeswoman. The suggested retail price will be $3.79, she says.

    That’s not exactly a bargain price compared to Ocean Spray’s other drinks, although it’s roughly in line with Izze’s similar sparkling juice product line. Izze, by the way, was bought by PepsiCo, a company that happens to be a distribution partner of Ocean Spray’s, in 2006.

    Update: I heard from a company that represents Ocean Spray that, in the Boston area, these sparkling juices will first be able to be found at Shaw’s and Hannaford stores, although their availability will most likely expand over time.


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