2016 Goodbye Sunnyboy

In September 2016 the Daily Juice Company announced that the Sunnyboy was being deleted. The pyramid-shaped ice block in a Tetrapak was part of a typically Australian childhood and the Twittersphere exploded with protests. Some, however, pointed out that pure nostalgia wasn’t enough to keep the brand alive and a lack of sales made the product’s death inevitable. The Sunny-boy trademark (with its original hyphen)  was first registered by Berri Limited in 1964.

Original Sunny-boy

Originally available only in orange, the Sunnyboy range expanded to include Glug Cola, Razz Raspberry and Zap Lime. The Pine Lime Pow flavour shown here apparently made a brief appearance in the 1970s.  The ice blocks were notoriously difficult to eat as you had to remove the corner of the pack and suck the flavour out, generally resulting in staining all around your mouth. A Sunnyboy could also be allowed to thaw and used as a drink.

It seems that Western Australia didn’t have the Sunnyboy, but a similar product called a Freeza. In a forum discussing the relative merits of the orange Sunnyboy and Glug, one member wrote “Growing up in the West I can’t recall Sunnyboys – however, we did have a ripper called Freeza which came in Cola (the Grange of iceblocks), Red (also awesome – probably a Bin 389), and Lime (terrible – Stone’s Green Ginger equivalent). If Sunnyboys came in a tetra pack, I’m guessing they were the same…”

Sunnyboy was a tuck shop staple as well as being sold in milk bars and convenience stores. It was extremely popular from the 1960s through to the 1990s.

The Daily Juice Company cited a ‘sustained reduction in demand’ as the reason for its decision. A company representative told a radio station: “We changed the pack size, we refreshed packaging. We also launched a new variety pack, but it didn’t matter what we did, we couldn’t stop that decline and it has continued at 10 per cent.”

The Daily Juice Company became part of Lion (formerly Lion National Foods), which was in turn owned by the Japanese company Kirin. In 2020 Bega Cheese bought the dairy and drinks division of Lion, establishing Bega Dairy and Drinks Co. Ltd, returning the Daily Juice Company to Australian ownership.

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