NEW YORK — Former First Lady Michelle Obama has co-founded a children’s food and beverage company, building on her efforts in the White House to improve the health of the next generation. She announced the launch of PLEZi Nutrition during The Wall Street Journal’s Future of Everything Festival on May 3.
The first product offering is PLEZi, a children’s beverage with 75% less sugar than conventional 100% fruit juices, with no added sugar, plus fiber and nutrients including potassium, magnesium and zinc. Flavors include tropical punch, orange, sour apple and blueberry. The bottled drinks are available at Target and Sprouts Farmers Market stores nationwide and online at Walmart.com. The company plans to add more beverages and snacks in the coming years.
Central to the company’s mission is to lower sugar content and sweetness to help adjust children’s palates to crave less sweetness overall.
“I’ve learned that on this issue, if you want to change the game, you can’t just work from the outside,” Ms. Obama said. “You’ve got to get inside —you’ve got to find ways to change the food and beverage industry itself. I’m proud to announce the national launch of a company designed not just to provide better products, but to jumpstart a race to the top that will transform the entire food industry.”
PLEZi Nutrition also will provide an educational platform for parents and children, promoting consumption of water and whole fruits and vegetables, supported by an advisory group of experts in nutrition, public health and parenting. Ms. Obama said the company also will donate $1 million to FoodCorps’ Nourishing Futures initiative to ensure students across the country have access to nutrition education and free school meals by 2030. Additionally, PLEZi Nutrition will invest 10% of profits into broader efforts to promote children’s health.Behind the development and launch of PLEZi Nutrition is L.A. Libations, the emerging beverage creator, incubator and accelerator behind celebrity-led brands such as Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s ZOA energy drink and Emma Chamberlain’s Chamberlain Coffee. L.A. Libations also is the key innovation partner of The Molson Coors Beverage Co.