The Evolution of the Smoothie Industry

The evolving interior of a store with a variety of smoothie products.

Smoothies have become an important part of a nutrition-focused lifestyle for many consumers. But, they have not always been so readily available.

Smoothies have gone through an extensive evolution to become the iconic blended beverage we have today. From the first refrigeration unit in 1915 making it possible to store fruits and vegetables for longer periods of time to the growth of “green” smoothies in the late 20th century, smoothies have gone through a variety of recipe changes and have achieved different purposes through the years.

Where Smoothie King Fits in the Smoothie Evolution

Today, the smoothie and juice bars like Smoothie King are part of a multi-billion dollar industry. After being in the smoothie industry for 44 years, Smoothie King has evolved their beverages into Smoothies With A Purpose®.

Guests can choose from a range of options that are filled with real fruit and fruit juices, nuts or veggies enhanced with high-quality proteins, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

The guest has the capability to choose a smoothie that can assist them in meeting their nutrition and wellness goals. Smoothie King offers:

  • Fitness Blends
  • Slim Blends
  • Wellness Blends
  • Take a Break Blends

Smoothie King has taken a blended beverage and given it meaning. The smoothie has come a long way throughout history and, if the past is any indicator of the future, will only get better.

When franchisees join the Smoothie King brand, they’re not simply selling blended fruit and juices. They’re participating in the evolution of the smoothie market with products that are specifically designed to help guests achieve their nutrition and wellness goals.

If you are interested in learning more about smoothies, click the link to see an infographic showcasing the timeline of the smoothie and how it has evolved throughout the years.

Evolution of the Smoothie Industry

Smoothie: A thick, smooth drink of fresh fruit pureed with milk, yogurt or ice cream.

Country of Origin: Crushing up fruit and adding fruit juice was a tradition observed by many ancient cultures. Versions of the drink have appeared in South American, Eastern and Mediterranean Cuisine.

1915: The first domestic freezer and refrigeration units became available to the public, for longer fruit and vegetable storage.

1922: Stephen Poplawski files a patent for the drink mixer.

1926: Orange juice stand owner Julius Freed and Bill Hamlin blend orange juice with a few choice ingredients, making it less acidic and frothier and creating the first popular smoothie drink in America.

1938: Fred Osius, improved upon Poplawski’s mixer, creating the “miracle mixer” making blenders available for home use.

1960: Fruit drinks slowly become a staple of health food stores and juice bars thanks to the macrobiotic and health food movement.

1973: Steve Kuhnau opens a smoothie shop and juice bar that will eventually become Smoothie King.

1990: Smoothie shops begin to open across the world creating a multi-billion dollar industry.

2004: Green smoothies gain popularity and begin a new national trend of veggie-based drinks.

2017: Today, the smoothie industry is stronger than ever with new recipes designed for weight management, meal replacement and simple indulgence

2019: Smoothie King rolled out the Clean Blends Initiative, expanded the menu to include blends with 0 grams of added sugar, while incorporating more whole fruits and vegetables into existing and future blends. At the same time, we’ve eliminated: artificial colors, flavors and preservatives, high fructose corn syrup, GMO ingredients, rBST/rBGH added hormones, NSF-banned substances, hydrogenated oils, gluten and trans fats.

Today: The smoothie industry is stronger than ever, with new recipes designed to help people stay fit, slim down, improve overall health and wellness, or simply take a break and enjoy their favorite flavors.

Be Part of Smoothie History

Smoothie King is always moving the smoothie industry forward. The brand is expanding all over the world and is on a mission to inspire people to live a healthy and active lifestyle that includes nutritious products and supplements.

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