Yerba mate -- a caffeinated South American drink brewed like tea from the dried leaves of the mate plant -- is a niche product in North America. Guayaki wants to take it mainstream. The 40-employee Sebastopol, Calif., company is trying to prove that a beverage popular with Whole Foods customers can win over 7-Eleven and Kroger’s shoppers, too. Selling loose mate leaves and bottles and cans of the brew, 14-year-old Guayaki had $10 million in sales last year and is projecting $13 million in 2010. Few other beverage makers sell mate in the U.S. Two Coca-Cola brands recently entered the market: Honest Tea launched a mate line last year and Minute Maid started selling juices flavored with the herb in March.
President Barack Obama pledged in a speech to world leaders today that the U.S. will do what it takes to prevent Iran from building a nuclear weapon and warned that time for a diplomatic resolution “is not unlimited.”