634 episodes

The top podcast for anyone building a business in food or beverage, BevNET’s Taste Radio features interviews with the leaders and rising stars of our fast-evolving industry. The shows also include discussion on emerging trends, innovation and news of the week from our regular cadre of hosts from the BevNET and NOSH teams.

Tell us what you think at ask@tasteradio.com. You can also email us if you are interested in Taste Radio sponsorship opportunities. And if you like the podcast, share it with a colleague, will ya?

Taste Radio BevNET Inc.

    • Business
    • 4.9 • 195 Ratings

The top podcast for anyone building a business in food or beverage, BevNET’s Taste Radio features interviews with the leaders and rising stars of our fast-evolving industry. The shows also include discussion on emerging trends, innovation and news of the week from our regular cadre of hosts from the BevNET and NOSH teams.

Tell us what you think at ask@tasteradio.com. You can also email us if you are interested in Taste Radio sponsorship opportunities. And if you like the podcast, share it with a colleague, will ya?

    Kendall Toole Loves This ‘Quit’. And She Wants You To Try It.

    Kendall Toole Loves This ‘Quit’. And She Wants You To Try It.

    If you know Peloton, you probably know Kendall Toole.
    Kendall is one of the most recognizable and beloved trainers on the exercise platform, known for her upbeat personality and high-intensity cycling classes. She’s also a popular wellness and fitness influencer with 1.3 million followers on Instagram and TikTok combined and an ambassador for athletic apparel company Lululemon. 
    In October 2023, Kendall entered the beverage industry as a partner with Don’t Quit, a sports nutrition brand that markets high protein shakes and clean ingredient energy drinks. 
    We sat down with Kendall for a conversation about her involvement with Don’t Quit and how she’s involved in marketing and promotional initiatives. As part of our conversation, Kendall shared her approach to communicating authenticity on social media, how she talks about Don’t Quit’s functional ingredients with consumers and how she played a key role in a label revamp for the brand’s energy drink line.
    Show notes:
    0:35: First Time? Meet A Retail Buyer In NYC. Data (Not The Star Trek Guy). Lithium & Cocktails. – The hosts discuss valuable opportunities for both attendees of the upcoming BevNET Live Summer 2024 event and BevNET/NOSH Insiders. The Newton-based crew also sips on sparkling coconut with a groovy vibe, full strength and non-alcoholic cocktails and a lithium-infused beverage while Jacqui munches on candied nuts.
    18:00: Kendall Toole, Partner, Don’t Quit – Kendall teaches Taste Radio editor Ray Latif a new word, discusses how she incorporates her everyday consumption of Don’t Quit products into her social media posts and how the energy drink makes its way into her Peloton classes. She also chats about a key brain-boosting ingredient in the beverages, her influence on package design, shares a recipe for a high-protein ice cream and why her goal is to spur conversation and “give people a platform to be seen” on Instagram and TikTok.
    Brands in this episode: Don’t Quit, Via Carota, Aplos, Live Loud Foods, Paqui, Strange Water, Happy Pop, Lithios, Curious Elixir No. 9

    • 31 min
    Patrick Mahomes Drinks A Lot Of Coffee. And He Wants To Share.

    Patrick Mahomes Drinks A Lot Of Coffee. And He Wants To Share.

    It’s no secret that Patrick Mahomes is one of the best players in the NFL. What is perhaps less known is his beverage of choice throughout the day: coffee. The three-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback says he drinks at least five cups a day to stay energized.
    It’s only fitting that Patrick is the lead investor in Throne Sport Coffee, a better-for-you iced coffee brand developed for athletes and active consumers. Founded by former BodyArmor marketing chief Michael Fedele, Throne is made with sustainably sourced arabica coffee and contains 150mg of natural caffeine per 11 oz. can. The products, which are sweetened with cane sugar and enhanced with B vitamins, electrolytes and BCAAs, come in four varieties: Mocha Java, Salted Caramel, French Vanilla and Black.
    Prior to Throne’s launch on May 16, we sat down with Patrick and Michael who discussed the origins of the brand and their relationship, why the brand’s target audience includes both health-minded athletes and blue-collar workers, the reason they don’t describe the products as energy drinks, the company’s initial focus on convenience stores and how Patrick is highlighting his consumption habits to build an authentic relationship with consumers.
    Show notes:
    0:35: Michael Fedele, Founder/CEO & Patrick Mahomes, Lead Investor, Throne Sport Coffee — Taste Radio editor and Buffalo Bills fan Ray Latif clears the air with Patrick before Michael explains his interest in entrepreneurship and the opportunity he saw in the RTD coffee category. Patrick discusses his daily coffee routine and his perspective that Throne is a healthier option for himself and consumers. Michael talks about how he met Patrick and how a genuine connection helped formalize a business relationship. Ray samples Throne’s French Vanilla variety and recalls a conversation with Kobe Bryant before asking Patrick about which aspects of the company’s business plan and strategy are most attractive to him. Michael explains why Throne’s products only include a small amount of cane sugar and highlights the $7 billion market for RTD coffee and Gen Z consumers’ interest in the category. Patrick explains why his regular consumption of Throne is the basis for his promotion of the brand, and Michael discusses the company’s initial focus on retailers in middle America.
    Brands in this episode: Throne Sport Coffee, BodyArmor, Vitaminwater

    • 20 min
    It’s Time To Get Beyond Plant-Based Battles. Bala To The Rescue.

    It’s Time To Get Beyond Plant-Based Battles. Bala To The Rescue.

    Jacqui’s recap of the recently held Vegan Women’s Summit spurs a conversation about consumer perception of – and some resentment about –  plant-based food and meat alternatives, in particular. The hosts also highlight a new high-test coffee brand that’s backed by a high-profile investor, note a new and valuable benefit for Insiders and sample prebiotic sodas, BFY cookies and a show-stopping non-alcoholic red wine.
    This episode also features a conversation with Dr. Farnoush Fadavi is the co-founder of Bala Enzyme, a brand of plant-based drink mixes formulated with a proprietary blend of turmeric, bromelain, and papain that contain no sugar. When taken regularly, the products are said to help regulate the body’s inflammatory response and improve circulation to accelerate recovery and natural healing. 
    Show notes:
    0:43: Almost T-Boned. The Grimace Burger. Sporty Samples. Wine Keys. Uncouth Swine! - Mike recalls a moment in time when Jon Landis may have saved four lives; Jacqui gives a rundown of a recent vegan-centric event that emphasized inclusivity and the hosts discuss Beyond Meat’s less-than-rosy outlook and Actual Veggies’ newly announced funding round. They also sample and chat about Throne Sport Coffee, a new brand whose primary investor is NFL superstar Patrick Mahomes; how to access useful data at a nominal cost; why they’re gaga about a certain saint; and how Craven cringes every time Ray pours anything into a cup.
    29:47: Interview: Dr. Farnoush Fadavi, Co-Founder, Bala Enzyme – Bala launched in 2019 and has since picked up distribution in over 2,000 retail locations, including nationwide at Sprouts and is also sold DTC via its website and on Amazon. In this interview, Dr. Farnoush talks about how a confluence of her education, career as a dental surgeon and an unfortunate accident spurred the creation of Bala, why the company is emphasizing brick-and-mortar retail as much as e-commerce, its package size and pricing strategy and the key terms that help drive trial.
    Brands in this episode: Bala Enzyme, BodyArmor, Core Hydration, Fuze, NOS Energy, Beyond Meat, Meati, Actual Veggies, BodyArmor, Lemon Perfect, Equitea, Aura Bora, Nguyen Coffee, Heywell, Saint Viviana, Levo, Olipop, Good Word, Cien Chiles, Fishwife

    • 49 min
    Why Lance Collins, Creator Of Billion-Dollar Brands, Can’t Stop

    Why Lance Collins, Creator Of Billion-Dollar Brands, Can’t Stop

    Twenty-three years, nine brands and four successful exits. Serial entrepreneur Lance Collins has seen it all. 
    Yes, he sold Fuze and NOS to the Coca-Cola Co. and reaped a windfall return. Yes, Coke also paid billions to buy BodyArmor, while Keurig Dr Pepper acquired Core Hydration for $525 million. There’s no question that his wins are impressive. 
    But Lance will tell you that he’s made nearly every mistake one can make in the beverage industry and has experienced raw and desperate times, including mortgaging his house to stay in business. 
    When asked about a throughline that has linked his companies and defined his career, Lance points to passion. He says it’s why he continues to develop new beverage concepts, such as organic sports drink Recover 180, fitness-centric energy brand Accelerator, additive-free tequila Casa Azul, better-for-you soda MyMuse and ZEN WTR, a brand of sustainable bottled water.
    We sat down with Lance at the 2024 Beverage Forum, where he talked about his current and past ventures, lessons from successes and missteps, how he identifies white space and defines differentiation, the reason that entrepreneurs fail and why he encourages founders to make “fast mistakes.”
    Show notes:
    0:35: Interview: Lance Collins, Founder, BodyArmor/Recover 180/Accelerator/Fuze – Lance and Taste Radio editor Ray Latif reminisce on past interviews and why the entrepreneur is a “traveling salesman.” Lance also talks about the grind and long-term process of building a beverage company, getting into the beverage alcohol business and why he launched another sports drink brand. He also explains lessons learned from BodyArmor and how he’s applying them to Recover 180, the challenge of competing with Celsius, his take on Poppi, the impact of standout package design and why he credits great people to much of his success. 
    Brands in this episode: BodyArmor, Fuze, NOS Energy, Core Hydration, Recover 180, Accelerator, Casa Azul, Celsius, Poppi, MyMuse, Bang, Monster Energy, Red Bull

    • 20 min
    Is Superfood Still Relevant? And, Why Is ‘Rampage’ On A Kick?

    Is Superfood Still Relevant? And, Why Is ‘Rampage’ On A Kick?

    Dates, consumed for millennia, are having a modern moment. But can the superfood maintain its momentum, particularly among mainstream consumers? And, while we’re asking: has “superfood” lost its luster? Taste Radio’s hosts have their say. We also sit down with MMA icon Quentin “Rampage” Jackson, who is a partner with upstart beverage brand F3 Energy.
    Show notes:
    0:38: No ECL, Thank You. Don’t Sit Next To Ray. A Plurality of Cacao. Sounds Fishy. – Mike trolls Ray about a recent soccer game, it’s clear that Jacqui is the one to call in the event of an emergency, and an early-stage date snack brand sparks a discussion about how the fruit and other superfoods are marketed and sold. The hosts also munch on a new line of corn-based, onion-flavored, ring-shaped snacks (yes, you guessed it) and opine on better-for-you versions of legacy snacks, while Mike gets ceremonial about a new cacao drink and reveals a somewhat strange breakfast habit.
    30:14: Quentin “Rampage” Jackson, Partner, F3 – MMA fans are undoubtedly familiar with the name “Rampage.” The sobriquet belongs to one of the sport’s icons, Quentin Jackson, a former title holder in the UFC’s light heavyweight division. Quentin is still active in the MMA community and currently aligned with the United Fight League, which was founded by entrepreneur Harrison Rogers in 2023. Harrison is also the founder of F3, a nascent brand of energy and mood-enhancing drinks, of which Quentin is a partner. Quentin spoke about his role with F3, why he urged Harrison not to get into the beverage industry and how he’s using novel social platforms to promote the brand. He also addresses a touchy topic that almost landed Ray in hot water.
    Brands in this episode: F3 Energy, Straightaway Cocktails, Sibz, Joolies, Ora Cacao, Chia Smash, Lesser Evil, Funyuns, The Good Crisp, Doritos, Combos, Rivalz Snacks, Snacklins, Harken Sweets, Djablo Sauce, IQ Bar, Doosra, Fishwife, Ark Cocktails, Monster Energy

    • 45 min
    What Keeps Emma Chamberlain Up At Night? It’s Not The Coffee.

    What Keeps Emma Chamberlain Up At Night? It’s Not The Coffee.

    Emma Chamberlain isn’t jaded by the ebb and flow of beverage entrepreneurship. Not yet, anyway.
    On the contrary, the 22-year-old, who rose to fame as a YouTube creator and has since become one of the most prominent influencers in the world, says that she revels in the daily lessons learned from building her coffee brand, Chamberlain Coffee. 
    Founded in 2020, Chamberlain Coffee sells whole beans, matcha and instant coffee direct-to-consumer and also markets ready-to-drink dairy-free lattes that are carried by Whole Foods, Albertsons, Walmart and Target. 
    We sat down with Emma and Chamberlain Coffee CEO Christopher Gallant at the 2024 Beverage Forum, held last week in Manhattan Beach, California, for a conversation about the brand’s development and growth strategy, why its identity is anchored by love and modernity, and how collaborations with other brands is determined by a set of “filters.”
    This episode also features a conversation with Buster Houston, the vice president of national merchandising for supermarket giant Albertsons. Buster offers a deep dive into Albertsons’ merchandising strategy and the “four p’s” that dictate decision-making; how packaging impacts shelf placement and, in turn, generates trial; why slotting fees aren’t as cut and dry as they may seem and how early-stage brands can start a conversation with the retailer.  
    Show notes:
    0:35: Interview: Emma Chamberlain, Founder & Chris Gallant, CEO, Chamberlain Coffee – Ray makes Emma blush before she and Chris discuss Chamberlain Coffee’s progress at Whole Foods, how the brand is generating velocity at the retailer and how they are attempting to cultivate love for the brand among Emma’s followers. They also talk about how product mix enables them to reach a broader audience, creating a coffee company for modern consumers, convincing Starbucks consumers to try Chamberlain Coffee and why Emma is constantly fascinated by the beverage industry.
    14:03: Interview: Buster Houston, VP National Merchandising, Albertsons – Buster riffs on his first name before discussing the complexity and key elements of a successful merchandising strategy. He also talks about the evolution of package design and how it applies to esoteric beverages, what might compel Albertsons to take a flier on a new or innovative brand, the art and science of merchandising, and how the company uses internal and external data to make merchandising decisions. He also explains how brands can “graduate” out of the natural sections of its stores, the reason that he describes slotting fees as part of a partnership with Albertsons and why he encourages founders to email him.
    Brands in this episode: Chamberlain Coffee, Starbucks

    • 37 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
195 Ratings

195 Ratings

VIK808 ,

Can’t get enough!

As a brand owner, I can't tell you how much I enjoy listening to Taste Radio. From emerging brands and great guests to what's hot and what's not, I can't get enough. I always walk away from each episode pumped! Thanks, @Bevnet!

- Bryan Willard
Owner, Valley Isle Kombucha

ygvftyvgyckfycfhkck ,

Informative

I’ve learned so much about the beverage industry from these episodes. Really enjoy hearing the founder and investor perspectives, as well.

Tommy the Almond Oil Guy ,

Great CPG insight!

Loved this from the first episode!!!

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