Coca-Cola Australia has announced plans to relaunch and extend its Fruitopia range of fruit juices. The company has committed a multi-million dollar budget to the relaunch, which is seen as a direct challenge to fruit juice leader Berri.

Speaking to news agency the Australian, Coca-Cola Australia managing director Gary Williams said: "This is the start of an umbrella master brand called Fruitopia." The move is part of Coke's long-term push to expand its core carbonated soft drinks business into non-alcoholic beverages and other sectors, the Australian noted.

Coke has tried twice before to boost Fruitopia's profile in Australia. The range of cordials was launched in the early 1990s and was relaunched as a fruit juice brand in 2001. Williams told the Australian, however, that the name still "researched well" with consumers and "reflected great taste values".

Fruitopia currently has 4% of the Australian juice market in value terms.

Last year, Coke saw its planned acquisition of Berri turned down by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission. In August, San Miguel bought a 50% stake in Berri.