Capitalizing On Needs: School lunches suck, Fruit 66 tastes good

Brand Marketing Fruit 66Brand Marketing Collides with High-Quality in the School Lunchroom!

When companies are consciously driven to deliver beyond expectations, success is bound to follow.

It’s not that long ago that Fruit 66, a juice company located in Richmond, VA set out to create a juice product that delivered something different.  But today, just 5 years since they launched, the company is trying to keep up with the demand that reaches to Canada, Guam, the Cayman Islands and China.

“We started with a juice concept, but we wanted our product to fit the needs of what the schools and kids in the U.S. needed,” said owner, William Hargis.  Discovering what that universal need was meant digging deeper than the claims touted by trend reports and industry papers; Vargas set out to conduct his own research.

“I sat down with the USDA, the School Nutritionist Association, the Institute of Medicine and key food directors across the state and simply asked, ‘what do you want…what is the perfect beverage?’ and they truly had a hand in crafting what Fruit 66 is today,” says Hargis.


There’s no greater health concern exploding right now that the war on childhood obesity. But how does a juice drink combat this epidemic behemoth? In the school lunch line, Vargas would suggest, specifically on the tray.

Childhood obesity doesn’t mean depriving kids of taste; it means our country needs to stop feeding kids empty calories. But Vargas says traditionally, dropping calories also means the bottom drops out on nutrition – this is the zone where some juice companies hit a wall but where Fruit 66 sparkles.

Most drink manufacturers only strike with three standard nutrients that meet the regulations and guidelines then they water it down add sugar back in and ratchet up the calories. That whole process left Vargas unquenched. Why not beat the standard, he asked.

“I thought, why only produce what they need; let’s give this product everything we possibly can.  That’s why we fill our juices with five essential nutrients,” Vargas says of his sparkling juice that is 6 ounces of pure juice and 2 ounces of sparkling water.

And kids love the flavor profiles, they can and they haven’t a clue they are getting 30 percent less sugar and their daily allowance of key nutrients. The product is selling so well and even moms are hounding their grocery stores to carry the product on a retail scale.

Hitting the Lunch Line

Believe it or not, Fruit 66 carries enough nutrient value to replace the fruit serving on the lunch tray.  With whole grains increasingly bountiful in everyday food items, Fruit 66 can leave the fiber of the apple behind and deliver mainly on nutrients.

But when you enter the school arena, you have to drop the carbonation…Done.

Fruit 66 emerges this year with a non-carbonated product line that is 100 percent juice, all natural and still low in calories.

Today, Fruit 66 is in 15,000 schools nationwide and is available to students who have tested and some even submitted their ideas for the new flavor profiles that include passion fruit, melon and more.

Here’s a company capitalizing on the movement to better nutrition for today’s kids and he’s delivering above expectation. Where can you apply your product or market your services to align with today’s trends? Remember, when you discover it…you’ve got to move fast! School lunch periods are as quick as the next passing trend!