Starbucks Bringing “Romance & Theater” to Evolution Fresh Premium Fruit Juices
11/11/2011 – SEATTLE - Starbucks Coffee Company (NASDAQ:SBUX) has announced the acquisition of Evolution Fresh, a premium juice company based in San Bernardino, California. The $1.6 billion premium juice segment is attractive, but Starbucks’ goals are projected well beyond selling juice.
During a press call, Starbucks’ chairman, president and CEO, Howard Schultz said the $30 million purchase is a“small acquisition in size (but) it is a significant strategic decision and direction for our company.” Schultz was clear that it was Starbucks’ intention to not only reinvent the premium juice category but also go after the $50 billion Health & Wellness sector.
Starbucks is expecting to leverage its national consumer package goods distribution and ability to identify quality real estate locations with Evolution Fresh’s juicing process which involves High Pressure Pasteurization (HPP). According to Virginia Tech, “HPP makes food safer and extends its shelf life, while allowing the food to retain many of its original qualities and healthy attributes.”
Evolution Fresh was started by the original founder of Naked Juice, Jimmy Rosenberg. Rosenberg decided to get back into the premium juice business creating Evolution Fresh, an authentic juicer that still cracks, peels, presses, and squeezes its own raw fruits and vegetables. With the HPP technology that had become available, Rosenberg saw an opportunity to raise the quality and nutritional benefits in the juice category.
Without providing a timeframe, the company said consumers will begin to see Evolution Fresh at Starbucks Stores on the West Coast. Starbucks expects to begin opening new retail juice outlets in the first half of 2012. During the press call, Schultz said Jeff Hansberry, president, Channel Development for Starbucks and his team have been hard at work for six months developing the new retail concept which is expected to bring “romance and theater” to the health & wellness sector and differentiate their juice in the process. Starbucks expects the juice/wellness stores to be similar in size and scale to Starbucks stores.
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