Honest Tea to stretch West Coast distribution thanks to Coca-Cola bottler

LOS ANGELES Coca-Cola Company and a West Coast division of Coca-Cola Enterprises, have announced that Coke’s biggest bottler will begin distributing Honest Tea brand bottles teas in selected Western markets. The move will extend Honest Tea’s U.S. distribution to grocery stores, gas stations and other retailers.

Earlier this year, Coca-Cola Company bought 40 percent of the Honest Tea business, a transaction totaling $43 million. The all-natural, organic tea maker is now worth an estimated $110 million.

A Los Angeles arm of Coca-Cola Enterprises Inc. will hold the rights and begin distribution of Honest Tea and Honest Ade in cities in Arizona, Nevada, Northern California, Oregan and Washington in late September.

Coca-Cola has said that its buy-in of Honest Tea is part of a plan to extend its holdings into non-cola beverages, energy drinks and bottled water. Coca-Cola last year acquired Glaceua Vitaminwater for $4.1 billion.

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