Jamba Juice is just 'Jamba' now

Posted at 6:10 AM, Jun 07, 2019

Jamba Juice is squeezing out part of its name. It's now simply now known as "Jamba."

The health food chain announced the name change Thursday. Jamba said the new name better reflects its menu, which has more than juices. It's expanding its offerings with smoothies, bowls and sandwiches as consumers gravitate toward healthier foods.

The company said its loyal fans have been calling it "Jamba" for years. But the official name change is part of a larger modernization initiative for the 30-year-old company, which also includes a new mobile app, remodeled stores and new delivery options through Uber Eats and Postmates.

Jamba is also trying to stay on trend with plant-based alternatives. Jamba said its beverages will soon be available to be made with spirulina, oat milk and pea protein.

"Food and beverage category lines are blurring so fast, especially in the premium functional segment, that it no longer makes sense to limit a brand's identity," said Duane Stanford, executive editor of Beverage Digest, a trade publication. "Smart brands are creating platforms that have meaning and meet consumers wherever they are."

Jamba changed its name as "juice" has become a dirty word in recent years. People are trying to reduce the number of empty calories and sugar they consume, so they aren't drinking as much as sugar-laden juice as they used to. In 2012, American shoppers bought about 4 billion gallons of juice . That figure had fallen by about 530 million gallons just five years later, according to market research provider Euromonitor International.

The same trend has hurt soda sales in the United States.

So, Jamba said it's reducing the amount of sugar from its drinks and will roll out more reduced-sugar drinks later this year.

"We're staying true to our heritage as an innovator in the space and refreshing the brand to stay focused on how we can make it easier, better and faster for guests to live a more active lifestyle," Jamba's president Geoff Henry said in a release.

Along with the refreshed menu, Jamba has a new logo, loyalty program and slogan ("Smoothies. Juices. Bowls.").

And its 800 US stores will begin to be remodeled later this year. The stores will feature light wood and calmer colors, a shift from the bright oranges and greens that it currently uses. Coolers are also being added for customers to pickup their online orders.

Jamba's name change follows Dunkin Donuts' change to Dunkin' last year. The makeover was part of Dunkin' Brand's efforts to relabel itself as a "beverage-led" company that focuses on coffees, teas, speedy service and to-go food including — but not limited to — doughnuts.