Mountain Dew is getting a boozy, non-caffeinated cousin.
Pepsi is teaming with Boston Beer Co., which makes Truly Hard Seltzer and Samuel Adams beers, on “HARD MTN DEW,” a new flavored malt beverage (5% alcohol by volume) to hit the market in early 2022, the companies said Tuesday.
Coming in three flavors – original, black cherry and watermelon – the new drinks will have no caffeine or sugar and will be “marketed to adults of legal age and merchandized consistently with other alcohol beverages,” the companies said.
Boston Beer will make “HARD MTN DEW” and Pepsi will create a new division to sell and deliver the beverages.
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This isn’t the first collaboration between breweries and soda makers. Last year, Coca-Cola teamed with Molson Coors to bring Topo Chico Hard Seltzer to market in the U.S. earlier this year.
Ready-to-drink (RTD) cocktails including hard seltzers is a big market and was the sole alcohol beverage category to grow last year, reaching $30.5 billion worldwide, according to IWSR Drinks Market Analysis. RTDs are expected to grow 27% in volume worldwide this year, too, IWSR estimates, and account for about 10% of the total U.S. alcohol market.
Not every hard seltzer is a winner – Molson Coors quit making its Coors Seltzer earlier this summer.
Boston Beer was an early entrant in the seltzer market, launching Truly in 2016. Earlier this year, Truly began selling a new hard seltzer variety pack with new flavors: fruit punch, berry punch, tropical punch and citrus punch.
“We know that adult drinkers’ tastes are evolving, and they are looking for new and exciting flavorful beverages,” said Boston Beer CEO Dave Burwick in a statement. “The combination of our experience in brewing and developing the best-tasting hard seltzers and hard teas, and MTN DEW, a one of kind multi-billion dollar brand, will deliver the excitement and refreshment that drinkers know and love.”
Follow Mike Snider on Twitter: @MikeSnider.