monster ultra low sugar energy drink

Coca-Cola Enterprises has unleashed a new salvo in the war on sugar - the launch of a range of zero-sugar and zero-calorie Monster energy drinks.

Rolling out from next month in grocery and forecourts, the Ultra range comprises three products - a core citrus flavour, citrus and orange Ultra Sunrise and ‘refreshing and crisp’ Ultra Red. While original Monster Energy boasts 55g, or 13 teaspoons, of sugar in a single 500ml can, the Ultra lines have no sugar and are sweetened with sucralose and acesulfame K.

Monster distributor CCE has high hopes for Ultra, which, since launching in the US three years ago, now accounts for a fifth of Monster sales in the country. The launch comes as UK sales of Monster are up 18% year to £127m [Nielsen 52 w/e 15 August 2015], which CCE said made it the fastest-growing major brand in the category.

Ultra will join the brand’s existing zero-sugar, zero-calorie Absolutely Zero, which launched in the UK in 2012 and is now the third-bestselling SKU in the Monster UK range. CCE said the taste profile of Absolutely Zero was closer to traditional Monster than the Ultra range. “We’ve responded to the overwhelming demand from consumers and Monster brand fans to introduce a wider selection of variants, which contain zero-sugar and zero calories,” said CCE operational marketing director Caroline Cater. “Monster Energy Ultra has been hugely successful in the US, and we’re looking forward to working with retailers to replicate this performance in Great Britain.”

In addition to distributing Monster in Great Britain for Monster Energy Co, CCE markets the Relentless energy drink brand, which also includes zero-calorie drinks branded as ‘Ultra’. Relentless Ultra was expanded with a Mango variant this February.