Arizona Iced Tea Owner Refuses To Raise Their Prices — ‘People Having A Hard Time Paying Rent Shouldn’t Have To Pay More For Our Drink’

More brands and companies should take the same approach.

AriZona sweet tea can. 6428W Digital Art /

While many major corporations and businesses boast success on the backs of overworked employees and struggling consumers paying high prices, the Arizona Beverages brand has done quite the opposite, leading the pack in an entirely different way.

After an interview with Today, Arizona’s founder, Don Vultaggio, went viral on social platforms for his refreshing take on making a profit and running a successful company.


The Arizona Iced Tea founder said he refuses to raise prices in the current economy, including their 99-cent cans.

According to Today, after 30 years in business, Arizona is a multi-billion dollar company, and at its helm, Vultaggio has amassed an estimated $3 billion fortune. 

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While trends and flavors come and go, one thing has remained constant since the company’s inception in 1992 — its prices. When asked why, Voltaggio pulled no punches. “We’re successful. We’re debt-free. We own everything.”

“Why have people who are having a hard time paying their rent have to pay more for our drink? Maybe it’s our little way of giving back.”

After decades in the industry, he prioritizes ‘looking out’ for consumers as if they’re his own friends and family.

When asked if he had future plans to increase prices, he couldn't say with certainty, but not in what he described as the "foreseeable future." Adding, “We’re gonna fight as hard as we can for consumers.” 

Of course, despite being Arizona’s founder and a modern-day picture of success, Vultaggio came from humble beginnings, which he credits with setting the standard for his ethics. “I used to daydream that I was going to pull up in front of this big factory,” he told Forbes in 2017. "The guard knows me. He welcomes me and opens the gate to my factory.”


After the brand's 2002 collaboration with Arnold Palmer — a half-tea, half-lemonade concoction bound for instant success —Arizona skyrocketed in popularity, and Voltaggio got a taste of the success he dreamed of as a kid. 

Now, with his two grown sons helping him run the company, he's imparting his customer-first ethos to them.

@todayshow #AriZonaIcedTea is notoriously still only 99 cents, despite rising prices across the food and drink industry. Owner Don Vultaggio explains why he is so adamant about the price staying under a dollar, and if that will change in the foreseeable future. #TODAYShow #3rdHourTODAY ♬ original sound - TODAY Show

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Arizona’s founder also prioritizes a welcoming workplace for his employees.

Consumers aren't the only beneficiaries of Vultaggio's forward-thinking business model. He also clearly supports Arizona's employees, boasting a headquarters decorated in sustainable handmade furniture, saunas, and community spaces dedicated to relaxation — there's even a putting green

With a blend of “old school” and traditional office values — like 2-hour team meetings — and “progressive” takes on rest for employees, Voltaggio ensures that everyone’s treated like family.

AriZona iced tea on a store shelf. The Image Party /


Of course, unlike many other corporate offices, their view of “family” isn’t misguided by toxic relationships, overworked employees, and loopholes for burnout—they truly provide healthy spaces to connect. “I’m focused on things like if my wife, my mother, or my sister worked here, what I would want them to have,” he said. "That’s what makes business work.”

It’s unfortunate that companies and founders like Voltaggio are so far and few between, but they’re a humbling reminder that it’s possible to be profitable and ethical at the same time. 

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Zayda Slabbekoorn is a News & Entertainment Writer at YourTango who focuses on health & wellness, social policy, and human interest stories.