The bee's knees
Buzzworthy Austin teen's lemonade brand beelines into Target stores
The queen bee of Austin’s favorite lemonade brand has just landed a deal with a major retailer that’s as sweet as honey.
Me & the Bees — the certified minority-owned lemonade company founded by Austinite Mikaila Ulmer when she was just 4 years old as a way to help save the bee population — will now be available in more than 800 Target food cafes across the nation.
The refrigerated lemonades will be available at Target stores in three all-natural flavors: classic lemonade (the brand’s original flavor, which was based on Ulmer’s great-grandmother’s recipe); prickly pear; and ginger. Each 12-ounce bottle is shelf-stable and contains no preservatives or additives, no high-fructose corn syrup, and less sugar than most similar lemonade options, the company says.
The deal, which puts Ulmer’s lemonade in all 50 U.S. states, is part of her 12-year-old company’s plan to expand across a variety of outlets, from retailers to restaurants and online sellers, according to a release.
While Me & the Bees can further expand its reach into the $12 billion global lemonade market with the Target deal, Ulmer is still focused on her company’s mission of saving the bees and educating consumers about the importance and decline of the bee population. As such, a percentage of Me & the Bees' profits are donated to the Healthy Hive Foundation, Ulmer’s nonprofit group, which works to increase awareness of and promote safe environments for bees through education, research, and preservation efforts. The buzzworthy phenom even published a book last year, “Bee Fearless: Dream Like a Kid” that outlines her rise from bee-sting sufferer to entrepreneurial success and advocate for the bees.
“Two of my dreams have come true today: One, offering our lemonades at one of my all-time favorite stores, Target, and two, reaching our goal of having our brand present in all 50 states,” Ulmer says. “As we enjoy warmer temperatures and the country continues to safely open, our lemonades are sure to quench the thirst of Target guests wanting a refreshing, all-natural beverage while running errands. Buy a bottle, save a bee!”