Coffee Chains Introduce New Retail Items

Starbucks rolls out packaged Teavana while Peet’s Coffee expands ready-to-drink presence

Two coffeehouse chains have rolled out new retail items this week, with Starbucks rehabilitating its Teavana brand in packaged form and Peet’s Coffee expanding its national presence with a new line of shelf-stable ready-to-drink beverages. Seattle-based Starbucks has completed the closure of its more than 350 Teavana units — a tea brand it bought nearly six years ago — and is introducing packaged tea under that brand in retail stores. The company did not name which supermarket chains will sell the tea. Six flavors can be found on some grocery shelves starting this month, with the rollout complete by 2018, Starbucks said Tuesday. Peet’s Coffee, meanwhile, has launched a line of shelf-stable, ready-to-drink iced espresso beverages for national distribution, the Emeryville, Calif.-based coffeehouse chain said Monday. Previously, the chain, which operates around 400 coffeehouses, mostly distributed its ready-to-drink cold beverages on the West Coast, as those were not shelf-stable and had to remain cold. The new Peet’s True Iced Espresso line doesn’t have those limitations and is available at Kroger, Albertson’s and Safeway, among other supermarkets nationwide, as well as through the company’s website,, the company said in a release. Starbucks said it’s entering the $1.2 billion U.S. packaged tea category as it sees success of Teavana sales in company stores. The Teavana line has grown 14 percent since the start of its current fiscal year. “The launch of Teavana packaged tea in grocery is just the beginning of the journey to bring consumers some of their Teavana favorites in a new, accessible format where they purchase their groceries,” John Culver, retail channel development executive, said in a statement. Culver said Starbucks is committed to increasing the company’s tea business to $3 billion over the next five years through various retail channels. The sachet tea flavors hitting grocery stores are: Youthberry: Citrus-berry white tea blend Peach Tranquility: Soft peach and tropical fruit flavors Citrus Lavender: Orange and pineapple with lavender and sage Jade Citrus Mint:  Lemon with green tea Imperial Spiced Chai: Traditional chai spices and a Chinese oolong tea base with cinnamon, tropical fruit and citrus notes Earl Grey Crème: Black tea with vanilla and lavender Starbucks paid $620 million in cash for Teavana in December 2012. Last summer, the company announced plans to close all retail outlets, many of which were inside malls. Peets’ new espresso drinks are made from dark-roast, single-origin Colombian espresso and contain between 10 grams and 17 grams of sugar per 8-fluid-ounce can. They come in four flavors: Black and White: A lightly sweetened latte made with espresso, milk and cane sugar Vanilla Latte: A sweeter blend of espresso, milk and vanilla Caramel Macchiato: Espresso, caramel and milk Mocha: Espresso, milk and cocoa The suggested retail price is $2.99. “After the success of bottling our signature cold brew, we are excited to introduce a premium RTD iced espresso that can be enjoyed anywhere.” Gretchen Koch, director of marketing and innovation for Peet’s Coldcraft line of ready-to-drink beverages, said in a statement. “It was not easy to craft a canned shelf-stable coffee that is worthy of Alfred Peet’s name. We focused on sourcing high-quality, clean ingredients and fine-tuning the production method to ensure a creamy coffee experience on par with the iced espresso beverages handcrafted by Peet’s baristas. By using better ingredients, our Peet’s True Iced Espresso has 25 percent fewer calories per ounce and 40 percent less sugar per ounce than the category leader, making it the perfect coffee for on the go.” The launch comes two months after Peet’s, a subsidiary of JAB Holding Co., introduced canned Baridi Black Nitro Cold Brew, which is canned with a nitrogen widget that releases when the can is opened and gives the coffee a creamier consistency. The national distribution is a continuation of Peet’s moves to expand beyond its West Coast stronghold. It’s currently building a roasting plant in Suffolk, Va., to help manage growing demand east of the Mississippi. The new plant, slated to open by the end of the year, is slightly larger than Peet’s existing roastery in Alameda, Calif. Contact Nancy Luna at [email protected] Follow her on Twitter: @FastFoodMaven Contact Bret Thorn at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter: @foodwriterdiary This article originally appeared in