What Happened to Fruitopia?

The 1990s were a wild decade. In the one-year span of 1994-1995 alone, both the first X-Games and the 25th anniversary of Woodstock occurred. And while extreme sports fanatics were slurping down Surge soda, the Phish-loving hippie revivalists at Woodstock were contemplatively enjoying Fruitopia. So what exactly was the Fruitopia drink, and how did it ride the ever-fluctuating trends of the ‘90s?

What is Fruitopia?

Fruitopia made its debut in 1994. It was birthed from the paragon of spirituality and consciousness: Coca-Cola. The execs there probably realized that their brand didn’t perfectly align with these esoteric ideals, so they released Fruitopia under their Minute Maid banner. This is just a friendly reminder that everything is owned by about six companies.

The hippie revival of the ‘90s corresponded with a big health food craze and marketing geniuses across the board pounced on both trends. Fruitopia was created as an alternative to soda and, like its competitor Snapple, it traded on its supposed health benefits. However, instead of being “made from the best stuff on Earth,” Fruitopia was “for the mind, body, and planet.” Heavy stuff.

The Fruitopia advertising campaign reinforced this image with a series of commercials featuring trippy, kaleidoscopic visuals, New Age-y music by artists like Kate Bush and The Cocteau Twins, and ridiculous platitudes like “Apples and pineapples don’t fight in fruit integration. People could learn a lot from fruit.” These are pretty deep insights that inspired a generation to… drink fruit juice.

And it did kind of work. Fruitopia was quite popular upon its release, even making its way into McDonald’s drink fountains and Fruitopia-dedicated vending machines. However, it would not last long.

What were the Fruitopia flavors?

Keeping with the New Age hippie theme, Fruitopia had brilliantly named flavors like Strawberry Passion Awareness, Blueberry Watermelon Wisdom, Raspberry Psychic Lemonade, Citrus Consciousness, and Tangerine Wavelength. These names all gave the impression that, by drinking Fruitopia, all the mysteries of the universe would be revealed to you and you would finally achieve inner peace. 

But even Fruitopia struggled to keep up with the ever-changing trends of the 1990s and realized that they couldn’t just market to people with hacky sacks and hemp necklaces. As extreme sports gained popularity, Fruitopia transitioned from consciousness to kickflips, introducing new flavors like Beachside BLAST and changing Citrus Consciousness to Citrus EXCURSION. You see, inner peace is fleeting, especially when there’s money to be made.

Why was Fruitopia discontinued?

Fruitopia had a good run, but its sales lagged as the decade wore on. Its beginning was like the hopeful hippie return to Woodstock 1994, but its end was a crash and burn like Woodstock 1999. By 2003, Fruitopia was completely discontinued in the U.S. Some of its flavors lived on in other Minute Maid products; you can still get Raspberry Lemonade, just without the psychic effects.

Can I still find Fruitopia somewhere?

While we look back on Fruitopia with rose-colored glasses, there are still a few places that keep that hippie spirit alive. In Canada, for example, there are still McDonald’s that serve Fruitopia, so you can go on a Deadhead-esque road trip to find Fruitopias around the Great White North. Or, hit up Amazon and order it directly from Canada for a ridiculous price.

If that’s not enough, you can sign the petition that demands the return of Fruitopia in America. Because if you want real change in this world, you have to expand your awareness and go on a mind excursion. Peace, love, and juice.

About the Author

Luke Field

Luke Field is a writer and actor originally from Philadelphia. He was the former Head Writer of branded content at CollegeHumor and was also a contributing writer and actor to the CollegeHumor Originals cast. He has extensive improv and sketch stage experience, performing both at The Upright Citizens Brigade Theater and with their Touring Company. In addition to writing, he also works as a Story Producer, most recently on season 4 of Accident, Suicide, or Murder on Oxygen. Keep your eyes peeled for his brief but impactful appearance as Kevin, the screaming security guard, in the upcoming feature The Disruptors, directed by Adam Frucci.

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