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Americas: Brewing company enters hard soda sector with product line

US-based Wachusett Brewing Company has developed a healthy alternative in the hard soda category and will be launching it nationwide in April 2016 following an initial rollout in its home state, Massachusetts.

The Nauti Seltzer line is the first offering from the Craft Cocktail Company (the new company that Wachusett Brewing Company launched to manage Nauti Seltzer and future non-beer beverages) four flavors — Raspberry, Lemon-Lime, Grapefruit, and Cranberry — sold in both six-packs and a variety 12-pack of 12-ounce cans from Crown Beverage Packaging North America.

Each 12-ounce can has 110 calories, five grams of carbohydrates, 5% alcohol by volume, and natural flavor.

Before settling on the Nauti Seltzer line, Wachusett had previously explored the hard soda market by developing an alcoholic root beer.

It was well received, but like others on the market contained high sugar content.

The company’s president and co-founder Ned LaFortune and his colleagues felt a healthier beverage would have much wider appeal and greater sales potential, so Nauti Seltzer was born.

Wachusett already has the packaging equipment and capacity for its national footprint, after a 2012 acquisition of a high speed canning line from the Coca Cola plant in Bermuda. Ultimately, it can fill and pack 800 cans a minute, which corresponds to four million cases annually.

Recently, Wachusett replaced its Hi-Cone line, an integrated ringer, with a six-pack cartoner.