Jamba Juice is expanding its freshly squeezed juice line, and plans to debut later this year a new-concept store that will tap into growing consumer demand for fresh juice.
Jamba Inc. chief executive James White says fresh juice is a $200 million to $225 million niche, with consumers increasingly demanding more healthful options.
Although Jamba Juice has offered a limited number of fresh-squeezed juices for 22 years, the orange, carrot and wheat grass options have been secondary to the primary smoothie line.
Next week, throughout most of the system, Jamba Juice will add three new fresh-squeezed juice blends to the line up, including:
• A blend of orange juice, carrot juice and bananas
• Orange and mango juice
• Orange with strawberry, blueberry and raspberry juice
White called the menu expansion “phase one” of a plan to offer more fresh juices.
The company completed its three-year BLEND turnaround plan, White said earlier this year, and has shifted into growth mode, with plans for 40 to 50 new U.S. locations for the 750-unit chain, as well as 10 to 15 new international locations. In addition, new initiatives include a move into schools and other nontraditional locations with an express, self-service variation called JambaGo.
Later this year, Jamba Juice plans to re-concept existing units in San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles and Seattle with a fresh juice emphasis that will stand apart from traditional Jamba Juice locations.
The new concepts will leverage research the company has been using to develop a new “store of the future,” which has also resulted in the JambaGo variant.
White said the company had plans to build its fresh juice offerings within a three-year “innovation pipeline,” but, he added, “We were able to move things around to address the competitive challenge.”
This year, Starbucks is moving into juicing with a new juice bar chain scheduled to open on the West Coast. Last year, the coffeehouse acquired the Evolution Fresh juice brand, with plans to expand its bottled juice business and grab a piece of what officials estimated as a $1.6 million premium juice market.
In addition to Starbucks’ planned entry into juices, a growing number of independent juice bars have been popping up across the country.
The 90-unit Juice It Up! smoothie chain is also retrofitting its stores to add a line of freshly squeezed juices.
White said Jamba Juice is also focusing on deepening the education and nutritional expertise of the chain’s staff to elevate the customer experience, not only in addressing questions about juice and juicing, but also about the nutritional profile of the chain’s core smoothie products.
Jamba already has the infrastructure in place to expand fresh juice options, White said.
“We feel there certainly is an opportunity there,” he said.
Emeryville, Calif.-based Jamba Inc. will report fourth quarter and full-year results Wednesday.