On Shelf
On Shelf

#OnShelf: Jack is back with a new taste

by Louise Burgers. New product launches from Jack Daniels and Engen, which enters the realm of convenience motoring; while Sprite gives us a glimpse of its clear new future packaging and designs.

by Louise Burgers. New product launches from Jack Daniels and Engen, which enters the realm of convenience motoring; while Sprite gives us a glimpse of its clear new future packaging and designs.

Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Rye launches in SA

The 150-year-old whiskey brand has launched Tennessee Rye in South Africa. Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Rye has a grain bill of 70 percent rye, 18 percent corn, 12 percent malted barley and is carefully charcoal mellowed for a finish that’s distinctly Jack. At 90 proof (90 proof means 45% of the liquid is alcohol), it – wait for it – “glows with accents of caramel and dry baking spice, followed by a warm, peppery rye character finish on the back end… the aroma is an enticing blend full of soft fruit, layered with an underlying rye spice and oak”, according to the ebullient press release. Every drop and bottle of Jack Daniel’s is made in Lynchburg, Tennessee; charcoal mellowed and matured in new American oak barrels; crafted by its own coopers. Master Distiller Jeff Arnett and his team of whiskey makers have created a distinctive taste profile for a new rye whiskey.

“Our whiskey-making process is so special, and it just makes sense for us to create our version of one of America’s first whiskeys,” said Master Distiller Jeff Arnett. “This is rye whiskey made Jack’s way. We think our grain bill provides the ideal taste and character – one that’s bold and balanced and not dominated by one flavour.” The brand can be enjoyed neat, on the rocks, and in a cocktail – it pairs well with ginger ale. It is available in a 750ml bottle at a recommended retail price of R329.00.

Sprite: ‘I can see clearly now’

The future is clear for Sprite as it moves away from its distinctive green packaging to clear, recyclable PET plastic packaging; with an update to its packaging design. Stephan Czypionka, marketing director of Coca-Cola Africa, commented: “We’re journeying to a World Without Waste and moving to clear Sprite packs, which means more of our plastic can be collected, recycled and re-used to make new bottles.” As part of its World Without Waste strategy, The Coca-Cola Company aims to collect a bottle or can for every one it sells by 2030. The company also aims to include 50% recycled content in its bottles by 2030. Clear PET can be made into a wide range of new products, such as pillow and duvet inners, as well as new bottles, so is more valuable than green PET, which has limited uses.

According to the PET Recycling Company (PETCO), 62% of PET bottles were collected after use and recycled in South Africa last year. The Coca-Cola system in South Africa currently uses an average of 8% recycled content in its bottles in South Africa, but the company needs more clear bottles to be collected and recycled to use in new bottles if it is to meet its recycled content target. The new Sprite look includes a refreshed icon of the brand’s bold and iconic Sprite ‘spark’. Each Sprite variant, from Lemon-Lime to Cucumber, will have a distinct label and different colour closure. The clear PET plastic bottles will be phased countrywide onto shelves from July 2020.

Safety first with new Engen app

The new Engen 1app pushes all the right buttons in offering motorists a safe and contactless way to pay for fuel and is a glimpse into the  future of convenience motoring. Seelan Naidoo, Engen General Manager: Retail, explained: “We have fast tracked the launch of our new Engen 1App and encourage all motorists to download it because it offers a safer customer service experience, as there is no touching of devices, cards or cash required.” With the app, Engen customers will no longer need to carry cash or cards to make fuel purchases; and loyalty points will automatically be registered with Engen’s respective loyalty partners, including Clicks Clubcard, FNB eBucks and Edcon Thank U. Other benefits include an interactive Engen service station locator; a vehicle logbook to track your mileage; full record of your purchase history and special promotions.


Louise Burgers (previously Marsland) is the Publisher and Editor and Co-Founder of RetailingAfrica.com. She has spent over 20 years writing about the FMCG retailing, marketing, media and advertising industry in South Africa and on the African continent. She has specialised in local and Africa consumer trends and is a passionate Afro-optimist who believes it is Africa’s time to rise again and that the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) will be a global gamechanger in the next decade.

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