• 09 Nov
    Functional juice trends

    Functional juice trends

     

    Attributes for a Healthy Life

    Sudipta Bhattacharjee, Research Analyst with Zenith Global, defines functional juices as those providing a health benefit beyond their basic nutrition content, incorporating physiologically active added components.

    The functional juice market has been growing steadily year on year, with the COVID-19 pandemic accelerating further growth. The pandemic has changed consumers’ attitudes towards health and immunity, as well as focusing on the health benefits of ingredients in products they are consuming. Although the aspect of ‘functional’ juices might have been a trend in previous years, experts expect that this will continue well into the future. The concept of a healthy life with a key focus on immunity has been brought to the forefront throughout the pandemic.

    Target market

    Young people and parents are often the target market for many functional juice companies. Amongst younger consumers, functional juice provides innovative flavours making a great addition to a busy lifestyle. However, in future years, strong marketing and sales campaigns are needed to appeal to all demographics so that a wider consumer base can reap the benefits of functional juice and lead healthier lifestyles.

    Research indicates over 75% of adults consume vitamins and minerals in supplement form. However, functional juice provides consumers with an easier way to consume their daily vitamins and mineral intake. Additionally, functional juice is suited for on-the-go consumption, particularly amongst young professionals. During 2020, on the go consumption considerably reduced as consumers took up working or studying from home. As there has been a greater onus on a hybrid work lifestyle in 2021, on the go consumption is expected to steadily rise post-pandemic, benefiting the functional juice segment.

    Innovation

    Functional juice shots have been increasing in popularity for on-the-go consumers. In the past, these typically 50ml to 100ml sized shots would be sold in specialist cafes and juice bars. However, there has been an expansion of functional juice shots into the retail sector. This has been driven even further by the pandemic as the majority of restaurants and cafes were closed. Alongside retail growth, higher demand has risen for online delivery services such as those offered by US-based company Uncle Matt’s Organic who produce functional juice shots containing live probiotics and vitamins C, D, and zinc. Supermarkets such as Wholefoods in the US and Sainsburys in the UK have also been widening its offerings of functional juice shots in stores, highlighting retail expansion into this growing category.

    Trends

    Other trends in this market include no additives and no added sugar in functional juices but consumers are now requiring more from juices. This includes juices with enhanced functionalities such as vitamins C, D, and zinc which has all been proven to strengthen immune systems, as well as reducing symptoms of fatigue. Pairing this alongside natural immunity-boosting ingredients such as ginger also coordinates well with a healthy lifestyle. In Western countries, there is a trend of incorporating ingredients traditionally found in Eastern countries such as ginger, turmeric, and ginseng in functional juices. For example, Suja Juice in the US, offer immunity juice shots all containing probiotics and ranging from turmeric, reishi mushroom and ginger flavours. In the UK, Plenish offers a lemon and ginger variant containing vitamins A and C for a healthier immune system.

    Countries within the Asia-Pacific region such as Japan and Australia continue to lead the way for immunity boosting functional juices. Asian giant POKKA offer juice made with vegetables such as its carrot juice enriched with antioxidants as well as vitamins C and E available in the Singaporean market. Australia’s Bae Juice created a hangover juice containing Korean pear which helps to absorb alcohol, reducing symptoms such as headaches and sore throats.

    Experimenting with both vitamins, minerals and natural immunity boosting ingredients in functional juice not only improves physical health but also has a positive impact on mental health. Research suggests regular amounts of magnesium, zinc and iron in consumers’ diets has been shown to improve cognitive function and reduce symptoms of stress. Functional juices allow for a broader healthier lifestyle encompassing both mental and physical wellness. For example, market leader PepsiCo’s Tropicana updated its functional juice range in late 2020. Available in the UK, the Tropicana + range contains added vitamins C, B6 and magnesium and are more clearly labelled to make it easier for consumers to understand the benefits of each drink in the range.

    Benefits

    Whilst incorporating several different ingredients certainly has increased benefits, functional juice does not require a multitude of ingredients for it to be beneficial. New Zealand based brand ’73 Citrus proves this as the company launched a sparkling orange juice with liposomal vitamin C in 2021 which helps to increase absorption and increase immunity.

    Functional juice has solidified its position in the market, as a core component in consumers’ day to day lives and has proven to be a popular option within the soft beverages’ category. Functional juice is a key attribute for a healthy lifestyle and an integral aspect of a stronger body and mind.

     

    By Caroline Calder Features
  • 09 Nov
    Botanicals – bringing an authentic taste to beverages

    Botanicals – bringing an authentic taste to beverages

    Consumer interest in botanicals is growing and can help your brand stand out on the shelves, writes Michel Aubanel from Kerry.

    Consumers who want clean label and sustainable ingredients are attracted to products that contain botanicals. This is especially true in beverages, where botanical flavours add a refreshing and natural ‘pop’ to taste. The use of botanical ingredients such as sage leaf and rose bud is also growing in categories including bakery, dairy and confectionery.

    BOX: The interest in using botanical ingredients in food and beverages is on the rise worldwide, with regions including Asia Pacific, North America and Europe leading the way. The global botanical extracts market—which includes all uses for botanicals—is projected to reach USD 7.59b by 2025, growing at a CAGR of 8.7% between 2017 to 2025, according to Market Watch. The market for foods and beverages that contain botanicals is projected to be valued at USD 1,489.3b by 2025, growing at a CAGR of around 3.2% between 2019 and 2025, according to Zion Research.

    In food and beverages, consumers tend to consider botanicals ‘premium’ ingredients. Local palates and availability dictate which botanicals are most popular. In this article, I explain why the use of botanical ingredients in food and beverages is growing, focusing on botanical taste, ease of use and perceived health benefits.

    What are botanical ingredients?
    When you transform raw material such as basil leaves, chamomile flower or cardamom seeds from their native format to a liquid format, you create a botanical extract. In food and beverage, botanical ingredients have a concentrated taste and a longer shelf life than fresh ingredients, which makes them especially appropriate for use in such products.

    What are the advantages of working with botanical extracts in food?
    Botanical extracts bring an authentic taste because they are derived directly from plants, usually from the leaves, flowers or fruits. Some botanical extracts are obtained from frozen raw materials while others from dried; the state of the source material can change the flavour intensity. Typically, frozen materials produce a more authentic and distinctive taste than dried ones.

    In addition to the previously mentioned botanical ingredients, other well-known or popular botanicals include mint, ginger, hibiscus, rhubarb, and various roots. Kerry’s taste portfolio includes individual botanical extracts as well as botanical blends, such as those made from elderflower, rose bud, chamomile, white tea, ginger, cinnamon, clove and cumin. Some customers even approach to us with a creative brief that includes specifications such as “provide a botanical extract that delivers the sensation of the seashore, from the salty water to the native plants.” The resulting formulations can provide enhanced taste complexity to products ranging from waters to spirits to wafers.

    Are botanicals sustainable?
    Because botanicals are natural, brands that include them in food and beverage products may choose to highlight their sustainability stories. For example, our botanical extracts such as vanilla and citrus have transparent sourcing and supply chain; some of our partners choose to make this information available to consumers through on-pack callouts and social media messaging. Some botanicals also feature recognizable certifications such as organic or Rainforest alliance certified, which brands may also showcase in their products. Some are sourced through local cooperatives in various regions, allowing farmers to remain based in their locality and avoid delocalisation to cities.
    Why do consumers buy beverages and food products containing botanicals?
    While botanicals add an authentic taste to products, many also come with perceived health benefits.

    For centuries, plant botanicals have often been associated with traditional medicine, aromatherapy and herbal infusions. Extracts such as ginseng have associations with energy, immune health and stress management.

    Kerry’s European study on botanicals revealed that while 95% of European consumers have heard of botanicals and 83% believe botanicals offer health benefits, only 11% believe they truly understand all the benefits of botanical ingredients. This makes clear that there is a need for education around botanicals, including how they might benefit a person’s health.

    Botanicals requires careful wording and regulatory review to ensure phrasing is allowed and appropriate. We’ve seen some effective campaigns that speak to the customary uses of botanicals by native people. This can convey tradition without being subject to scientific scrutiny.

    Botanicals and emotions

    New consumer research from Kerry also revealed that botanical extracts generate several moods and emotions with consumers including energy, excitement, peacefulness and fun.  The research, which uncovers the psychology behind botanical preferences and the perceived benefits consumers derive from consuming botanical food and beverages, examined 44 emotions that consumers associate with botanical extracts. Kerry surveyed over 6,500 consumers across 12 countries in North America, Europe, Latin America, Asia Pacific and Africa to discover attitudes towards over 55 botanicals flavours and ingredients.

    The research shows that botanical flavours connect with consumers on a highly positive level, beyond flavour and taste. Consumers also think about botanicals as being energetic, interesting, useful, trustworthy and safe. For example, a beverage with guarana, ginseng and ginger can carry a similar connotation of ‘energy’ as a coffee or energy drink would to the consumer. Meanwhile, ingredients such as saffron, bergamot and honey are considered premium.

    Innovation

    In a very highly competitive marketplace, brands are constantly attempting to stand out and interestingly 87% of consumers say that botanicals provide a unique taste experience. Meanwhile, according to Innova research, the use of botanicals on front of pack will result in a 23% price premium. Formulating with botanicals can certainly win consumer hearts, especially by using top appealing flavours such as mint, honey and cinnamon. Manufacturers should emphasize the link between botanical flavour, their corresponding emotions and perceived health benefits they evoke to create flavours that meet consumers’ daypart and occasion needs. These insights can be leveraged to connect with consumers to deliver a stronger taste experience in food and beverages and support product development.

    A longer version of this article was previously published on the KerryDigest. Visit www.kerry.com/insights/kerrydigest for more insights from industry leaders.

     

     

    By Caroline Calder Features
  • 09 Nov
    Europe – First fruit juice nutraceutical

    Europe – First fruit juice nutraceutical

    Barry Callebaut, the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality chocolate and cocoa products, leverages its deep scientific knowledge of the cacaofruit and the fruit’s supportive health effect, by presenting the first nutraceutical fruit drink. The new cacaofruit elixir – made from 100% pure cacaofruit – has a zesty fruity taste. By unlocking the power of science, the elixir is uniquely crafted to preserve the nutrients of the cacaofruit.

    The cacaofruit naturally contains the required amount of flavanols to optimize the blood flow across the entire body. It is a good source of iron, magnesium and potassium. Besides the 100% pure cacaofruit elixir, combinations with herbs and other fruits can be explored to enrich the range with beautiful taste combinations and additional nutrients. The nutraceutical fruit drink contributes to personal as well environmental health. Since it upcycles the whole cacaofruit, ‘Elix’ positively impacts nature and communities, said a spokesperson.

    “The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated consumers’ interest in their own health as well as in the health of their environment. The introduction of this new category of nutraceutical fruit drinks is another proof point of how Barry Callebaut, through its innovation capabilities and its profound knowledge of the cacaofruit, is able to cater to evolving consumer trends.” Commented Peter Boone, CEO of Barry Callebaut Group.

    Composed of almost 20,000 different types of molecules, the seed of the cacaofruit is one of the most complex food substances on earth. The R&D behind the cacaofruit elixir ‘Elix’ took Barry Callebaut more than 15 years. In addition, there is data available from more than 100 human clinical studies which provide sound scientific proof of the health effects of the cacaofruit flavanols.

    Barry-Callebaut

    By Caroline Calder News
  • 09 Nov
    UK – £27M investment in beverage canning line from Britvic

    UK – £27M investment in beverage canning line from Britvic

    As part of its commitment to the continuous improvement of its supply chain, Britvic has announced a £26.9 million investment into the future of its factory in Rugby, UK, Britvic’s largest production site. The investment will see the installation of a fourth canning line, growing the site’s total capacity by a further 18%. As a result, Britvic expects to create at least 20 new jobs at the facility.

    The efficient new set-up will produce recyclable 330ml cans for Britvic’s portfolio of leading brands including Tango, Pepsi and 7UP. The first cans are expected to be produced this November, with the new line fully up and running in 2022.

    The new jobs will be predominantly in engineering and manufacturing, helping to build upon Britvic’s role as a leading employer within the community. Apprentices will also play a vital role during the expansion, filling some of the engineering roles and assisting with improvement projects as production commences.

    The news is further evidence of Britvic’s continued investment in its supply chain and follows the completion of the transformative £250m Business Capability Programme, improving facilities for the benefit of colleagues and customers. Britvic

    By Caroline Calder News
  • 09 Nov
    US – New bacteria ID will help apple juice producers avoid spoilage

    US – New bacteria ID will help apple juice producers avoid spoilage

    Apple juice lovers won’t be left with a bad taste, thanks to a new study that identifies three new bacteria species, one of which fouls up the flavour.

    The three new species – Alicyclobacillus mali, A. fructus, and A. suci – all belong to the genus Alicyclobacillus, but A. suci was found to produce a compound called guaiacol, which is known in other Alicyclobacillus species to create a medicinal, smoky or rubber-like flavor in shelf-stable apple juice. While Alicyclobacillus bacteria can affect juice quality and lead to spoilage, they are not a food safety concern.

    “Better understanding the structure of the Alicyclobacillus genus and the spoilage potential of individual species drives improvement in quality management decisions that reduce waste and improve customer satisfaction,” said Abigail Snyder, assistant professor of microbial food safety in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and senior author of a paper published last september in the International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology. Katerina Roth, a graduate student in Snyder’s lab, is the paper’s first author.

    The findings will allow manufacturers to identify whether their juices contain A. suci, which leads to spoilage. It will also help them fine-tune their Alicyclobacillus control strategies and will support the development of tools and diagnostic technologies for the industry, Snyder said.

    Apple juice is acidic and is often heated during pasteurization, conditions that inhibit most bacteria. Unfortunately, Alicyclobacillus bacteria are extremophiles whose spores are capable of surviving extreme heat and high acidity. The bacteria originate from orchards and soils and can contaminate apples used for making juice. After juice has been processed and bottled for such products as apple juice, concentrates, teas, sports beverages and coconut water, spores can germinate, grow and produce guaiacol, causing spoilage. Also, the effects are not visible; the drinks appear fine.

    Once spoiled, producers may be forced to throw products away, and if sold, unhappy consumers can lower a brand’s reputation, Snyder said. A 2017 survey of juice manufacturers by Snyder and Randy Worobo, professor of food science and a co-author on the current paper, revealed that more than 97% of participants indicated that spoilage mattered ‘a lot’ or ‘a great deal’ in brand protection and close to 90% indicated that better control over microbial spoilage would have moderately to greatly increased profits and reduced waste.

    The researchers used genomic, biochemical and phenotypic analyses to identify the three new Alicyclobacillus species. The study benefitted from decades of extension work analyzing samples from the beverage industry in New York, the country’s second largest apple producing state, and beyond.  CornellChronical

    By Caroline Calder News
  • 09 Nov
    Europe – GEA builds world’s first carbon-neutral juice production facility for innocent

    Europe – GEA builds world’s first carbon-neutral juice production facility for innocent

    GEA Group AG, as key project partner, has provided innocent, Europe’s leading smoothie and juice brand, with the process technology for the world’s first carbon-neutral juice factory. The new factory in the Netherlands will lead the way for future plants in the food industry with a truly sustainable approach. Located at the Rotterdam Food Hub, the production facility is scheduled to open officially in spring 2022.

    In the new-build project, GEA is responsible for the process, refrigeration and heating technology. Early involvement in the design planning phase enabled the company to develop numerous innovative process changes that significantly help innocent on the path to reaching its climate goals.
    Taking a 360-degree view of the process chain will allow innocent to substantially cut its carbon footprint while massively influencing other parameters such as water consumption and waste generation. MarketScreener

    By Caroline Calder News