NEW YORK: PepsiCo, the food and beverage group, is planning to "drinkify" some of its snacks, offering an innovative way to extend well-known brands and drive up revenues.

Speaking at a recent industry conference, Indra Nooyi, the company's chief executive, suggested that introducing liquid variants of selected snack lines could be a profitable approach.

"A way to grow the beverage business is to take foods and drinkify them," Nooyi said, as reported by the Financial Times.

"There's a whole range of products we have in the pipeline that are value-added products that can be snacks made into beverages."

One example of PepsiCo's activity in this area thus far is Quaker Ready to Drink, rolled out in southern Brazil earlier this year, and sold in strawberry, red fruit and peach flavours.

The product combines skimmed milk, fruit and oats, and contains around 100 calories per 200ml serving. Shoppers who are "on the move" or interested in health and wellness are the main target audience.

Equally, the organisation's Naked smoothies, many variants of which are enhanced with vitamins and  protein, have proved to be a forerunner of this strategy.

Such products not only leverage both of PepsiCo's core fields of expertise, but also constitute a reminder of the benefits resulting from its broad portfolio, in response to calls to split up the firm.

"The fact that PepsiCo is a food and beverage company gives us a more holistic view of the consumer, what foods they eat, what do they like to drink, what parts of what they eat are they willing to drinkify," said Nooyi.

PepsiCo is currently in the midst of a corporate reform programme which has included boosting its marketing expenditure by more than $500m this year.

Tackling the challenges facing its drinks business has been a primary motivator of this change, with an emphasis on creating better sweeteners and similar innovation playing a key role going forward.

"When you have a secular trend and consumer fatigue with a category, I think it's a great opportunity to reinvent that category," Nooyi said.

Data sourced from Financial Times; additional content by Warc staff