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Dixie paper plates toughen up with new Ultra line

BY Allison Cerra

ATLANTA Dixie has modified its patented rim construction on its paper plate products to make the plate 40% stronger, the company announced.

The new plates come in two different designs to appeal to a variety of consumers and are slated to hit store shelves next month.

New Dixie Ultra plates are available across the country in grocery, club stores and mass merchandisers. As part of this major product upgrade, Georgia-Pacific is supporting the product’s rollout with new advertising that launched nationwide earlier this month.

The integrated campaign features a television spot in which a variety of foods – meatballs, fried chicken, pancakes, and sirloin steak – drop onto a Dixie Ultra plate in slow motion, emphasizing the strength of the new plate. The foods ceremoniously hit the plate in rhythmic fashion in time with the 1812 Overture. The print ads, online and in-store campaign components follow a similar theme.

“The new campaign focuses on the strength of the plate and the variety of heavy, messy foods that consumers usually don’t believe a paper plate can handle,” said Patrick Dodson, senior director marketing for Dixie. “The visuals in the new ads are key in demonstrating that the new Dixie Ultra is now the strongest paper plate in the market.”

For more information on Dixie Ultra, and to see the entire line of Dixie tabletop solutions, visit www.Dixie.com.

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Dr Pepper Snapple Group expands energy drink portfolio

BY Allison Cerra

PLANO, Texas Dr Pepper Snapple Group has expanded its Venom Energy portfolio with the addition of fruit punch and mango flavors called Death Adder and Killer Taipan, respectively.

Death Adder and Killer Taipan are the latest additions to the Venom Energy product line, which originally launched in June 2008 with two flavors: Black Mamba (regular) and Mojave Rattler (low-carbohydrate/low calorie).

“Energy drink enthusiasts are looking for more than just energy these days; they also want a variety of flavors and great taste,” said Chanda Rhodes, marketing manager for Venom Energy.  “The new Venom Energy fruit punch and mango varieties deliver unique and delicious flavors not typically associated with energy drinks.  Plus, they deliver that hardcore energy to keep you going all day.”

Venom Energy fruit punch, mango, regular and low-carbohydrate/low calorie offerings are available in a 16.9-oz resealable aluminum bottle at retailers for a suggested retail price of $2.39. Venom Energy regular and low-carbohydrate/low calorie offerings are also available at retailers in 4-packs of 16-oz aluminum cans for a suggested retail price of $6.99.

The Venom Energy blend contains caffeine, l-carnitine, guarana, ginseng and taurine – ingredients that consumers look for in their energy drinks.  For additional information, visit www.venomenergy.com.

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PepsiAmericas forms transaction committee to review Pepsi Co. proposal

BY Allison Cerra

MINNEAPOLIS PepsiAmericas Inc. said Friday that its board of directors has formed a transactions committee consisting of independent directors which has begun to review the non-binding proposal from PepsiCo Inc.

Goldman, Sachs & Co., Briggs and Morgan, P.A. and Sullivan & Cromwell LLP have been retained as advisors.

As previously announced, PepsiCo has proposed to acquire all of the outstanding shares of PepsiAmericas’ common stock.

With annual sales of $4.9 billion in 2008, PepsiAmericas employs more than 20,000 people and operates 33 manufacturing facilities and over 175 distribution centers across its markets.

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