It looks like Coke is giving their Barq's Root Beer brand a facelift with some new packaging.
"Barq's root beer is unveiling a completely new look to pay homage to the brand's Gulf Coast heritage and classically crisp, bold flavor… features a diamond pattern reminiscent of the drink's original 1898 12 oz. glass bottle packaging… Additionally, the label helps celebrate the brand's 114-year history by keeping the simple slogan "It's Good. Since 1898."
"All you did was drop the decorative ribbon and the green sassafras leaves!"
But in all seriousness, the green is not completely gone, just heavily reduced in use. Also, the reddish root beer barrels are slightly redesigned. Finally, you can kiss the ribbon phrasing "Famous Old Tyme Root Beer" good bye. Also, they apparently aren't adding Buffy the Vampire Slayer characters.
The press release notes a "diamond pattern," which really is the big change in the Barq's design. It provides a classier look, in my opinion. Also, with the ribbon removed and bold font proclaiming "It's Good // Since 1891", the overall implementation is much cleaner.
From the images, you can also see there will be a few "limited distribution" looks, including a glass bottle design that is quite a bit more retro, involving a purple/black Barq's logo and a diamond pattern etched into the glass bottles themselves. Some of this special packaging also shows diagonal black striping, which frankly may have been good to integrate into the primary redesign itself rather than used on just a special edition. It balances the silver well.
One thing the press materials do not mention is how this new look will be implemented across other Barq's brands. Shortly after the annoucement, Barqs.com updated with a "New Website Coming Soon" message. However, it also included an image of how Diet Barq's will look with the new design. Unfortunately, we still don't know what Barq's Creme Soda and Barq's Red Creme Soda will look like.
I guess we'll just have to wait-and-see when this new look is rolled out. While Coke didn't provide exact timeframes, they do note that this design is "currently rolling-out nationwide."
Here's the full press release for your reading interest:
New Barq's Package Design Serves Up a Fresh Look with Bite
ATLANTA, Feb. 16, 2012 /PRNewswire/ – Like any true classic, Barq's keeps it fresh while staying true to its roots.
In its first redesign in more than 20 years, Barq's root beer is unveiling a completely new look to pay homage to the brand's Gulf Coast heritage and classically crisp, bold flavor. The new design will be featured on all of Barq's packaging and is currently rolling-out nationwide.
While the cans will maintain their distinctive silver color, the new look features a diamond pattern reminiscent of the drink's original 1898 12 oz. glass bottle packaging, which is still available in the Gulf Coast area. Additionally, the label helps celebrate the brand's 114-year history by keeping the simple slogan "It's Good. Since 1898."
"When a beverage as beloved as Barq's undergoes a significant packaging evolution, we have to remain true to the brand's heritage and tradition while ensuring the brand is relevant to today's consumers," said Christina Manganaro, senior marketing activation manager, Coca-Cola North America. "We think the new design presents a cleaner, simpler look that captures the brand's essence in a way that will ultimately resonate with both dedicated Barq's fans and those who are new to the brand."
Barq's traces its heritage back to New Orleans, Louisiana and Biloxi, Mississippi where the beverage was founded and first produced by Biloxi Artesian Bottling Works. The brand was later purchased by The Coca-Cola Company in 1995. Since then, the sarsaparilla-based root beer has maintained its trademark bold flavor and caffeine kick reflecting the brand's well-known tagline "Barq's has Bite."