ARIZONA ICED TEA WAS BORN on a sad day in February 1991.Arizona Beverages USA (stylized as ARIZONA) is an American producer of many flavors of iced tea, juice cocktails and energy drinks based in Woodbury, New York. Arizona's first product went on sale in 1992 to compete with Snapple. Both companies originated in New York. Needing a little help with the alcoholic side of beverage preparation, Arizona partnered with Heineken to produce Sun Rise Hard Seltzer.
The company also introduced an egg cream called Lite Chocolate Fudge Float and added a new herbal tea to its line, which included chamomile, ginseng, bee pollen and honey. They had worked as delivery at a brewery and a beer distributor, and decided to form a team to form their own side business as a part-time company. The iconic AriZona logo, with its Southwestern design and bright pastel colors, wasn't created by any sophisticated marketing agency. Michael Schott, minority owner and vice president of Hudepohl-Schoenling when that company contracted the production and distribution of Midnight Dragon, was running a beer wholesale operation in Detroit when FV%26S introduced AriZona Iced Tea.
In 1990, they saw the success of Snapple (also a Brooklyn-based company founded in the 1970s) bottled juices and teas and tried to make their product. According to the Daily News, comedian George Lopez took to Twitter and joked, went to buy an AriZona iced tea and they asked me for my documentation. In particular, the partners highlighted the success of the beverage brand Snapple and decided to offer a popular ready-to-drink tea beverage with a distinctive pastel-colored container, something similar to works of art by American Indians, and a giant 24-ounce can. After gaining an audience in the skate community from the start, AriZona has fully embraced it in recent years.
Later in the year, the company introduced the first of what became its Soda Shop line of carbonated soft drinks Chocolate Cola, Diet Chocolate Cola, Vanilla Cola, Cherry Cola with chocolate coating and Root Beer Float under the name AriZona. In the spring of 1997, AriZona's new green tea with ginseng and honey had become a big hit for the FV%26 line. However, instead of passing on that additional expense to its customers, AriZona has found ways to reduce the cost of its business. In early 1994, FV%26S introduced AriZona Cowboy Cocktails, a juice-based product sold in flavors such as Mucho Mango and Strawberry Punch, to which kiwi, strawberry and piña colada were later added, and the company soon added lemonade and a chocolate-flavored skim drink.
According to Forbes, this problem came to a head during a trip to a manufacturing plant where they evaluated the price of a potential bottle of iced tea. The Los Angeles Times investigated this phenomenon and discovered why and how AriZona continues to sell its beverages at such a low price.