It’s been a busy year for CELSIUS. Can
you bring us up to date?
We relaunched our Originals line in
January 2017 with a complete rebranding
system that includes new packaging and
a repositioned brand tone. In March, we
launched the Natural line at Expo West and
the response was extremely positive. It’s a
naturally caffeinated and naturally sweetened
line extension that has the same efficacy as
the Original line. In April, we launched a new
brand called CELSIUS HEAT™, a line of
thermogenic carbonated pre-workout drinks
targeted toward the performance-driven
Why is CELSIUS Naturals a good fit for
grocers’ beverage aisles?
CELSIUS is a completely unique proposition—
it is a proven fitness drink that provides
functional benefits including metabolic
acceleration. Our claims are backed by six
university studies, all of which are published
on our new website. There is nothing else
like it in beverage. By making what are called
structure/function claims, CELSIUS sets itself
apart; not only does it provide healthy energy,
but it is also proven to accelerate metabolism
and burn calories & body fat.
The new Naturals line has the same
functional benefits but is an alternative for
those who opt for naturally sweetened drinks.
CELSIUS fits perfectly in the cross section on
shelf where healthy energy meets function.
What feedback have you had from
consumers about the Naturals line?
We are thrilled; the feedback has been
outstanding! Our flavor profiles have been
extremely well received. We launched with four
SKUs in total, two carbonated (Grapefruit &
Cucumber Lime) and two non-carbonated
(Pineapple Coconut and Watermelon Berry).
The stevia blend we use doesn’t have
a bitter aftertaste sometimes associated
with natural sweeteners, so consumers are
absolutely loving our flavor lineup. We have
also received overwhelmingly positive feedback
on the package design, which follows suit with
the rebranding that we completed earlier this
year on the Originals line.
Q&A WITH NICOLE
Nicole Cheifetz, Marketing
Director at Celsius Holdings,
Inc., says the company’s Natural
line breaks new ground in the
Brew Tea. Nikolau also points to nitro offerings, either kegged or in portable cans, as one
of the biggest trends he has noticed this year.
“Cold brew continues to grow within cof-
ICED, ICED BABY
fee and has expanded into tea,” Nikolaou adds.
“The demand is still strong with consumers,
which is giving brands sustainable growth. Yet
you’re starting to see the category experiment
and innovate past ‘cold brew.’ Some examples
would be carbonated fruit and coffee infusions
as well as nitrogen – a trend we think you’ll see
grow further with tea as well.”
Iced tea has really gone to new lengths in inno-
vation in recent years. For example, Key Largo,
Fla.-based beverage company Carela has intro-
duced iced RTD bitter melon green teas to U.S.
shelves. Bitter melon is believed to have a vari-
ety of health attributes, such as being helpful
to blood sugar regulation. Retailers can ben-
efit from stocking their shelves with on-trend
interesting coffee and tea beverages, which not
only draw in the wellness-minded crowds who
are willing to pay a premium, but also create
an exciting experience for every shopper as
they discover new products they have never
“The greatest opportunities we foresee is
more retailers interested in carrying cold brew
coffee and tea as well as a willingness to take
some risk with unconventional and innovative
brands,” Nikolau says. “I think the challenges
on the horizon that most of these brands
face is further educating the consumer on
their offerings as well as their value proposi-
tion. Additionally, production and pricing are
always challenging when working with new
processes or ingredients.”
In addition to health and wellness, consumers
have also developed a taste for local products.
Many retailers have increased their focus on
sourcing products produced nearby. Much to
the delight of their customers, Shoprite, a sub-
sidiary of Keasbey, N.J.-based Wakefern Food
Corp., recently expanded its Locally Grown
program, which offers “a rich variety of prod-
ucts throughout the supermarket – from farm-
raised beef to seafood, flowers, fresh fruits and
vegetables, baked goods, honey, craft beer
and roasted coffees,” according to company
Among the coffees that have recently joined
the program are: Booskerdoo Coffee, which
roasted in Monmouth County, N.J.; T.M.
Ward Coffee, a family-owned, 148-year-old
Newark, N.J.-based coffee company that roasts
its own peanuts and coffee; and Candlewood
Coffee, which is roasted in Connecticut and
sold in ShopRite stores within the state.
“ShopRite is proud to work with local family
farms and businesses because local is not only
how we source our food, it’s who we are,” says
Derrick Jenkins, vice president of produce and