The world’s largest coconut-water brand is launching a coconut milk product in the UK in March in a bid to become “all things coconut”.
Vita Coco – which already sells coconut water, coconut oil and flavoured coconut juices – was formed 13 years ago and expects to approach US$1bn in sales this year by expanding into new categories, according to a CosmeticsDesign.com report on 15 February.
The global market for coconut water hit US$2.2bn in 2016, up from US$533M five years earlier, according to Euromonitor International.
Vita Coco accounted for 46% of the US$889M US market, more than triple the share of Zico, its next closest competitor, the CosmeticsDesign.com report said.
The company is targeting consumers who are shunning soda, traditional juices and regular milk.
“Sales of regular milk declined in the USA between 2011 and 2016 but plant-based alternatives – including coconut milk – have surged 61%,” the report said.
Vita Coco CEO Michael Kirban said the target audience for Vita Coco Coconut Milk was consumers drinking organic milk who wanted a non-dairy option that did not taste watered down.
The milk is created by mixing coconut water (made from the liquid inside green coconuts) with coconut cream.
Kirban said he expected to eventually sell the company to a strategic buyer.
Coca-Cola had bought stakes in juice company Suja Life, aloe-water maker LA Aloe and lactose-free dairy company Fairlife had acquired Zico in 2013, CosmeticsDesign.com said.
In November, PepsiCo announced the acquisition of KeVita, which makes fermented probiotic and kombucha beverages, and Dr Pepper agreed to buy Bai Brands for US$1.7bn.