Baton Rouge entrepreneur launches ‘most innovative sports drink on the market’

    Joseph Tucker, the Baton Rouge entrepreneur behind the startup that produced the hydrating mouthguard Hydra-Guard, is launching what he calls “by far the most innovative sports drink on the market.”

    Using patented technology created by LSU researchers, Tucker says Hydra-Guard Recharge has roughly five times the amount of electrolytes as sports drinks such as Gatorade, but without all the added sugar. In fact, Tucker says, his drink has more electrolytes and less sugar than coconut water.

    “The only reason we’re able to create such an innovative drink is because of the patented technology we’re using, which LSU owns and I have bought the exclusive rights to,” says Tucker. “What it does is mask the taste of electrolytes, which have a very bitter taste, like potassium. So by masking it we’re able to keep from having to use as much sugar as drinks like Gatorade.”

    Tucker has been working on the sports drink for about a year with the help of LSU AgCenter Food Incubator Food Scientists Ashley Gutierrez and Drs. Gabriela Crespo and Marvin Moncada. The drink, which comes in four flavors and is made with all natural colors, flavors and sweeteners, is being manufactured and bottled at the Food Incubator. Tucker recently launched the product in Lake Charles at a CrossFit event he sponsored, and it immediately sold out.

    “It was a huge hit. We’re actually on backorder right now,” he says. “Our distribution plan is to start local, focusing solely on the Baton Rouge and south Louisiana area first and then expand from here.”

    Tucker says he has sales representatives visiting local supermarkets and fitness centers now, and he expects the sports drink to show up on local shelves soon. Matherne’s has already signed on and its grocery stores should be stocking the drink in about 30 days, he says.

    Meanwhile, Tucker says the hydrating mouthguard is now being sold across five states. Read a Business Report feature on Hydra-Guard from earlier this year.

    —Steve Sanoski

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