Coca-Cola said on Friday that it would expand sales of its new Simply Orange juice drink in the south-eastern US.

The soft drink giant said the new non-concentrate-based orange juice would be available in supermarkets, grocery stores and other retail outlets in Georgia, Florida and South Carolina.

The move is the second stage of a product launch designed to give the soft drink giant a larger share of the US$3.1-billion chilled orange juice market.

Simply Orange was launched last year in the north-eastern states of the US, which accounts for about a third of US orange juice consumption, by Coca-Cola's Minute Maid division.

Minute Maid expects the drink, which it describes as "revolutionary" to be a major success. "We're going after the people who really want that fresh squeezed orange juice taste," Brad Goist, vice president of refrigerated beverages with Minute Maid, said during a product launch ceremony in Atlanta.

Minute Maid will be backing the brand with an advertising campaign to support he product. Five different television ads are expected to run on main networks in the coming weeks.

Minute Maid would not disclose how much was being spent on the Simply Orange expansion.

Analysts said the Simply Orange launch was an astute effort by Coca-Cola and Minute Maid to win over consumers in a market already dominated by PepsiCo's popular Tropicana Pure Premium not-from-concentrate juice.

Experts believe Simply Orange would likely be available nationally later this year.