V8 V-Fusion Smoothies provide K-12 students tasty fruit and vegetable options

Tuesday 9 February, 2016

Kids, fruits and vegetables don't always mix, but V8 V-Fusion Smoothies are proving to be an increasingly popular healthy option for K-12 students in dozens of school districts across the U.S.

The smoothies come in four flavors and carry one serving each of fruits and vegetables in an eight-ounce portion. They are made, marketed and sold under license from Campbell Soup Company by Island Oasis, a maker of premium foodservice cocktail mixes and beverages. Island Oasis was acquired in late 2015 by Kerry, the global taste and nutrition company.

“V8 V-Fusion smoothies provide a great solution for schools looking for innovative products that kids love and are reimbursable under USDA guidelines,” said Andy Royston, chief marketing officer, Kerry. “Too often, kids discard the fruits and vegetables served to them with their school lunch. With V8 V-Fusion smoothies, kids get a serving of vegetables and fruit in a product they enjoy.”

Students have been throwing away more fruits and vegetables since the implementation of federal rules requiring healthier lunches, according to research published in Public Health Reports in September, 2015. The researchers noted that more work should be done to find ways to provide fruits and vegetables that kids would enjoy.

“Island Oasis has created this all-natural, no-sugar-added smoothie that lives up to the great taste and nutritional benefit of the iconic V8 brand and succeeds in getting school children to consume fruits and vegetables. It’s another way Kerry is providing products people enjoy and feel better about,” Royston said.

V8 V-Fusion smoothies come in strawberry-banana, peach-mango, watermelon-raspberry and tropical fruit flavors. Schools receive a packaged concentrate, which they pour into a smoothie machine provided by Island Oasis, enabling the drink to be prepared fresh, on site. In 2015, sales of V8 V-Fusion smoothies exceeded goals by more than 30 percent. While 80 percent of V8 V-Fusion sales are in K-12 schools, the product is also available in colleges and universities, healthcare facilities and retail establishments, such as smoothie shops, casual dining restaurants and resorts.

Kerry acquired Island Oasis in 2015 as part of more than $735 million in acquisitions designed to enhance its taste and nutrition capabilities. Kerry also acquired Insight Beverages, one of the nation’s leading formulators, manufacturers and distributors of hot and cold beverages in the C-store, foodservice and retail channels; Red Arrow, a leading supplier of natural smoke flavors and authentic natural savory grill flavors, serving meat, culinary and food industry markets worldwide; and Biothera’s Wellmune business, a natural food, beverage and supplement ingredient clinically proven to strengthen the immune system.