Pumped-Up Packaging

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Pumped-Up Packaging

PURCHASE, N.Y and DALLAS -- Pepsi-Cola is launching a series of new can designs that will debut every three to four weeks in hopes of grabbing the attention of increasingly fickle, restless and distracted young consumers, according to media reports.

Meanwhile, Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages (CSAB) announced that it will introduce new labeling on regular 7UP to provide more information to consumers about the beverage’s natural ingredients. The reformulated 7UP was introduced in spring 2006.

Beginning in February, new package graphics for Pepsi-Cola will change every few weeks to reflect themes close to the hearts of teens and young adults, such as sports, music, fashion and cars. The new graphics will be on more than eight billion Pepsi-Cola cans, bottles and cups throughout the world as part of a "global brand restyle."

The iconic Pepsi globe logo and name lettering will remain the same, but the background graphics will differ, marking the first time Pepsi has altered its look so frequently. In its 109-year existence, Pepsi-Cola's look has changed just 10 times, but in 2007 alone, it will change more than 35 times. This steady rotation of designs reflects the fast, ever-changing interests of the elusive "millennial" generation, the company said.

A 360-degree marketing campaign, including TV, print and out-of-home advertising, in-store merchandising, account-specific promotions and point-of-sale materials, will accompany the global brand restyle. In the U.S., the first can, titled "Your Pepsi," will link to a website inviting consumers to help design a Pepsi billboard ad that will run in New York City's Times Square in April, according to a company news release.

"On the surface, this might look like a packaging update, but it's much more than that. We're changing the way we interact with consumers -- and now we're doing it on their terms," said Cie Nicholson, senior vice president and chief marketing officer of Pepsi-Cola North America, located in Purchase, N.Y.

In related news, Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages said its new label on regular 7UP will go beyond applicable regulations and move from saying "100% Natural" to specifically highlighting the natural ingredients, for which there is no debate.

While the consumer response to the reformulated 7UP and removal of artificial ingredients has been overwhelmingly positive, Cadbury officials said they know that varied opinions on labeling of all natural products exist. Therefore, the new label will state that 7UP contains all natural flavors, as well as no added colors, no artificial preservatives and no caffeine, according to the Dallas-based company.