The food and drink company has invested in a multimillion pound marketing push to raise awareness of the brand, which became available in UK retailers for the first time in January.

The brand is skewed towards women, although it is looking to target all consumers looking for “moderation” and “balance” when it comes to their soft drink consumption.

Duncan McKay, PepsiCo UK and Ireland marketing manager, told Marketing Week the company is taking learnings from Trop50 in the US, where it launched in 2009 and is now a $200m business, to build the brand quickly in the UK.

He added: “What gives us great confidence in the UK is our runaway success in the US. We are very confident [this will be replicated] as we have completed a number of surveys, which found there is a definite need in the UK for a low calorie juice drink as there is a trend and concern around calories.”

Marketing activity includes a TV ad, digital banners, outdoor, POS and sampling. The brand today (7 February) also unveiled a partnership with designer Richard Nicoll, who has designed 50 limited edition dresses to coincide with the launch, with profits donated to Fashion Targets Breast Cancer.

The fashion-focused tie up comes in the same week Diet Coke officially announced its collaboration with designer Mark Jacobs, but McKay insists Trop50 will gain cut-through because it is “a different category, product and approach”.

A US study released today (7 February) from policy research group Hudson Institute found restaurants chains that serve more lower-calorie foods and beverages perform better financially.

Of the 21 chains the study analysed, nine increased the number of lower calories sold from 2006 to 2011 and also averaged a 6 per cent same store sales increase. The 12 that did not increase the number of lower calorie items sold averaged a 6 per cent decline.

Tropicana brands were the third highest selling drinks brands in the UK in the year to 2011, increasing sales by 4.5 per cent to £298m, according to the latest Britvic and Nielsen Soft Drinks Report.