Coca-Cola India branches out into functional and rehydration categories

By Lester Wan

- Last updated on GMT

Krishnakumar, president of Coca-Cola India & South West Asia, said Aquarius GLUCOCHARGE and Minute Maid Vitingo signify their entry into Enhanced Hydration and Nutritious Dilutables. ©Coca-ColaIndia
Krishnakumar, president of Coca-Cola India & South West Asia, said Aquarius GLUCOCHARGE and Minute Maid Vitingo signify their entry into Enhanced Hydration and Nutritious Dilutables. ©Coca-ColaIndia
Coca-Cola India has launched two new drink categories — Enhanced Hydration and Nutritious Dilutables — as it seeks to enhance its range of more healthy and functional products.

Within these new categories come the launch of Aquarius GLUCOCHARGE and Minute Maid Vitingo, respectively.

This portfolio expansion is part of Coca-Cola’s strategy of growing into more of a “total beverage company​”. This notion is centred upon the concept of a diverse portfolio of product brands attuned to local consumer preferences.

New functional drinks

Aquarius GLUCOCHARGE contains glucose, essential minerals (such as potassium, sodium and calcium) and fruit juice. It has been specifically designed for Indian consumers who toil in the heat and require instant re-hydration to overcome exhaustion.

The non-carbonated, low-sugar beverage with fruit juice costs Rs10 (US$0.15) for 200ml.

Minute Maid Vitingo, meanwhile, has been specially formulated to address micro-nutrient deficiency and malnutrition in India. Its formulation is fortified with iron, vitamin A, vitamin C, zinc, folic acid, and vitamins B2 and B12.

The drink comes in single-serving dilutable sachets of 18g, which cost Rs5 (US$0.07) each.

Regular consumption of Vitingo has been clinically tested to significantly reduce iron deficiency, anaemia and vitamin C deficiency among children, said the firm.

“The launch of Aquarius GLUCOCHARGE and Minute Maid Vitingo marks our entry into the space of ‘Re-hydrate, Replenish and Recharge’,” ​said T. Krishnakumar, president of Coca-Cola India and South West Asia.

“While Minute Maid Vitingo aims to be a part of the solution to malnutrition that the country is solving for, we are equally committed to making Aquarius GLUCOCHARGE a mass distributed brand in the next eight months.”

Coca-Cola’s incubation programme

Coca-Cola India has been seeking to extend its products that are specifically tailored to the Indian consumer.

“We have been actively focusing on our strategy to offer consumers a wide variety of choices as per their preferences and going ahead, incubating new products and scaling it up through our system would be key to our success,” ​said Krishnakumar.  

“Our reshaped portfolio will further accelerate the growth momentum and help us deliver enhanced business results.”

Local flavours, local business

The launch of these new beverage products also brings Coca-Cola India another step further into its “fruit circular economy” plan, enabling farmers to increase their yield, and for the company to source pulp from them and to launch more fruit-based products.

Last November, Coca-Cola India vowed to cultivate and use local fruits​ in new products to help boost the country’s agri-ecosystem.

The company signed an agreement with the Indian Ministry of Food Processing Industries worth $1.7b, which promised that, along with bottling partners, fruit suppliers and processors, it will seek to benefit local producers and businesses.

Coca-Cola India further said it would enhance its portfolio of juices with regional Indian fruits, add juice to its range of sparkling products and create new products with popular Indian fruits. Local fruits have been sourced and processed for Minute Maid, among its other drinks.

Coca-Cola India’s portfolio of local beverages such as Thums Up, Mazaa and Limca have been highly popular and it has recently announced more variants as well as expansion to other South Asian countries​. The company also recently launched its first no-sugar variant​ of a local home-grown brand, Thums Up Charged No Sugar.

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