Unilever enters healthy drinks market with Adez

LONDON - Unilever is making its second foray into the highly competitive soft-drinks market, with Adez, a soya-based fruit drink.

The launch is an attempt to win a share of the rapidly growing market for healthy drinks, and follows Unilever's UK launch of Lipton Ice Tea in 2002.

Adez is already sold in Argentina, where it is known as AdeS. It is available in a variety of fruit and natural flavours and is fortified with vitamins, minerals and calcium, with one variant developed especially for consumers with milk allergies.

The launch comes at a turbulent time for the soft-drinks market, which has seen a surge in the number of healthier product launches as more consumers turn away from sugary and carbonated soft drinks.

Danone's Actimel recently usurped Coca-Cola as the UK's biggest-spending soft-drink advertiser by brand, after increasing its adspend by 46% year on year to £13.2m in 2005 (Marketing, 22 March).

A spokesman for Unilever confirmed that Adez is poised for a UK launch, and will be aimed at a "mainstream market".

Sources claim that promotional activity for the brand will kick off this summer, focusing on key urban centres.

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