The market research firm this week released information from its Productscan database, which tracks the launch of new products on the marketplace. Energy Pop A US confectionery manufacturer has taken the popularity of energy drinks to the confectionery segment, with the introduction of an energy-giving lollipop MAXXED Energy Pop. The advertisement for the product claims it is infused with taurine, ginseng, guarana and B vitamins, as well as containing caffeine. These ingredients are more usually found in energy and sports drinks, an association reinforced in the product's packaging in a can. According to Tri Sales, the can helps retain the lollipop's freshness. "While the lollipop format is certainly novel for an energy food, it could be perceived as being too immature for some consumers, so it may be best targeted at younger adults," commented Datamonitor. The lollipop is being produced by the Charms Company, part of Tootise Roll Industries based in Tennessee, US. Charms produces other novelty lollipops such as Blow Pops, with a hard candy exterior and bubblegum centre. Chocolate Sea Salt Seasonings have also been given an innovation boost with the launch of a range of unusually flavored sea salts, said Datamonitor. The producer said it uses Dagoba Organic Chocolate and the salt comes from the natural park Ria Formosa in southern Portugal, harvested by hand, organically, with wooden rakes. The organic chocolate is said to lend "creamy, smoky and rich chocolate flavours". The chocolate salt is recommended with salads, to rim drinks, enhance deserts and grilled meats. The chocolate salt is part of the Lords of Salt range produced by Barhyte Speciality Foods in Oregon, US. Other interesting salts include those flavoured with Chardonnay grapes and hazelnuts. Datamonitor believes that these novelty salts could be a crowd pleaser "for consumers wishing to trade up to more exciting condiments." Edible Flowers Edible whole flowers are being exported to the US by French producer Florinnov, under the name Flor & Flor. The company said it uses a patented instant crystallisation process that incorporates the entire flower. The flowers are grown in Grasse, France, and around 10,000 crystallised flowers are produced a day. The taste qualities are preserved by natural additives, according to the manufacturer. There is a choice of roses, jasmines or violets. The company says they can be used in desserts, pastry applications, salads or cheese plates, but their main use is probably as cake decorations. Datamonitor believes that "with floral flavors being an up-and-coming flavour trend in the food and beverage market, these could be a hit with consumers seeking an expensive looking flourish to their baking." Florinnov is based in Barbezieux, St Hilaire, Charente.