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Mountain Dew to Try Hand at Craft Soda Market

It seems all varieties of food and drink are entering the “craft” marketplace, and Mountain Dew is no exception. The company will release Mtn Dew DEWShine on Mar. 23, marking the brand’s first foray into the craft soda market. The brand, which is incredibly popular with teens and Millennials, will sell a clear citrus Dew in clear, longneck bottles “inspired by the brand’s roots in the backwoods of Tennessee.”

The introduction of the new Mountain Dew comes as craft pizza, craft popcorn, craft beef jerky, and craft beers begin to take hold of their respective markets. There is one analog that can be studied to determine the future of the craft soda industry: craft beers have made a huge impact on the beer market, and their marketing, labeling and packaging can influence the emerging craft soda market. Some analysts believe that craft products with a similar emphasis on style will begin to emerge en masse from the soda market. Some critics even argue the new Dew bottles look too much like craft beers, while others are quick to argue that the longneck bottles are closely linked to craft products, both in the soda and beer markets.

This is the second craft soda parent company PepsiCo will offer on the market, as it introduced Caleb’s Kola last year. In addition, competitor Coca-Cola recently named an executive to manage craft beverages, showcasing the expanded interest in craft-style beverages with major producers It’s worth noting, as soda manufacturers scramble to preserve market share in a health-obsessed environment with lower sugar consumption and more nutritional offerings becoming powerful consumer demands, that Mountain Dew slightly increased its market share in 2013 despite having higher sugar and caffeine levels than many of its competitors. Perhaps Mountain Dew is already breaking from the established soda producer mold.