According to a Tuesday report, McDonald’s is test selling Monster’s energy drinks in 20 locations across the U.S. The two companies teamed up to gather consumer feed-back before expanding the test, or not to other stores.
McDonald’s didn’t provide more details on the test which first debuted this summer in five U.S. states. The company stated that it was gathering consumer feedback on the beverages before taking a decision.
If sales of energy drinks at the restaurant chain’s locations are successful and the company decides to introduce the drinks on all its menus, Monster may see its sales skyrocket. Currently, Monster Beverage Corp. is the largest energy drink maker in the U.S., while Red Bull is second. Energy drink industry is now worth $10 billion every year. Nevertheless, sales at restaurants remain weak.
On Tuesday, Monster shares spiked 5.2 percent to $139.51. The hike occurred after an announcement that the burger chain began testing the drinks in Detroit.
But the energy drinks could also energize McDonald’s which experienced a slump in sales for more than three years. Energy beverage market is expanding with a 6.4 percent growth last year. On the other hand, sugary drink sales are in free fall. Last year, soda sales slipped 1.0 percent.
Recently Coca-Cola acquired a large stake in Monster for a whopping $2.5 billion. The beverage maker is also trying to energize its sales after a 10-year slump caused by health concerns.
But Coca-Cola and McDonald’s are old business partners. McDonald’s still sales Coke and other sodas in its locations, even though last year it decided not to advertise anymore the drinks to children. Public pressure forced other companies to make a similar move amid concerns that added-sugar drinks may boost obesity and diabetes risk in children.
But energy beverages are not shielded from controversies. Consumer groups argued that they are linked to the death of at least 30 people in the U.S., heart problems and seizures. The American Medical Association banned advertising the drinks to kids and teenagers.
But Monster Corp and other producers argue that their drinks are safer than a Starbucks cup of coffee since they contain half the amount of caffeine. Additionally, ginseng and taurine, which are often used in energy drinks, were not proven harmful by scientific research.
McDonald’s declined to comment on health risks. A spokesperson for the company said that McDonald’s is test selling Monster’s energy drinks in 20 locations across five states. The drink will be sold for $2.29 a can or $4 for two cans in Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, Georgia, and Florida.
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