What's hitting the shelves? New beverage launches
Nestlé Japan has launched a range of Nescafé lattes made with plant-based ingredients, eying up rapidly growing interest in plant-based food in Japan.
The range includes RTD beverages for on-the-go or at home, soluble mixes that can be made by adding hot water, and capsules for the Nescafé Dolce Gusto system.
The drinks use either oat or almond milk as their base.
The launch in Japan follows earlier launches of Nestlé plant-based coffee mixes across a number of countries in Europe, Latin America and Oceania.
Sparkling water brand bubly has launched bubly bounce: a drink containing a kick of caffeine.
It is the first new launch for the home-grown PepsiCo brand since it was launched in the US in 2018.
bubly bounce contains 35mg of caffeine in a 12oz can or 47mg in a 16oz can (around half that of a cup of coffee).
bubly bounce comes in five flavors: mango passion fruit; tripple berry; blood orange grapefruit; citrus cherry and blueberry pomegranate.
Sparkling hop drinks
Aurora Superior Sparkling has launched two non-alcoholic, hop-infused sparking drinks in the US. The drinks use hops grown in the Pacific Northwest, and come in flavors pomelo sage and yuzu orange blossom.
Aurora’s other sparkling hemp beverages contain CBD, but the new line does not. “Hops and hemp both belong to the Cannabaceae family and share both flavors and aromas, making it a natural extension,” says the brand.
“Pomelo Sage features the bright and bitter aromas of Citra hops, balanced with citrus from the pomelo and the piney herbal sweetness of sage. Aurora’s Yuzu Orange Blossom highlights a blend of Mosaic and Citra hops and is tart with fragrant citrus, has delicate floral notes and is balanced with the woodiness of peppercorn for an overall light, aromatic and earthy taste.
“Chosen for their nuanced taste profile, hops are also considered to be a naturally-occurring nervine or an herb that supports the nervous system. The result is a soothing effect that has been known to reduce anxiety and promote a sense of calm. Aurora Hops redefines the traditional cocktail occasion by providing all the benefits of hops without any of the negative impacts of alcohol commonly associated with them — restoration without intoxication.”
Both drinks are non-alcoholic, naturally gluten-free, low in sugar and calories and contain no artificial ingredients.
Hard seltzer with added minerals
UK hard seltzer brand SENCE has relaunched with a new recipe, brand and consumer positioning: now known as SENTZ.
The 4% ABV natural hard seltzer’s point of difference is its three added minerals: calcium, magnesium and potassium. It has a fermented fruit alcohol base and is available in a trio of cocktail-inspired flavours covering three distinct palate profiles - tangy, sweet and spiced - with Sweet Melon & Mint, Tangy Raspberry & Lime and Spiced Orange & Ginger. It uses sparkling spring water that is filtered through the Oolitic limestone of the Cotswold Hills.
Xavier Warburton, founder of SENTZ said: “Our original hard seltzer was launched when there was little market intelligence. Since then, the category has evolved at pace with the advent of large brands jumping onboard the hard-seltzer trend which demonstrates confidence in the category and forecast continued growth.
“We are on a mission to change the perception that low calorie alcoholic drinks have to taste bad or be full of sugar or artificial ingredients.”
SENTZ has no artificial flavourings, sweeteners or colourings; zero sugar/carbs; and is gluten-free and vegan-friendly. It is available in retail in 330ml cans and in the on-trade in 330ml and 750ml glass bottles.
Brew Dr. Kombucha is launching a new ‘founders series’: featuring the limited re-release of top flavors from previous years.
The flavors to be revisited this year will start with Mint Lemonade - a light and refreshing kombucha featuring spearmint, peppermint, lemons and green tea - from now to April; followed by Mango Habanero (May-August) and Northwest Hops from (September – December).
“We've been tinkering with kombucha for over a decade; naturally, there are several flavors that we've retired along the way. Dedicated fans have often requested that we bring back their favorites, and Founder's Series is the perfect way for us to do that,” said founder Matt Thomas.
“Introducing these limited-release flavors in bottles featuring artwork from our past is a nostalgic treat for long-time supporters and an enjoyable taste of our company's roots for newer customers.”
Bodyarmor: sports drink with caffeine
Bodyarmor has launched Bodyarmor Edge: a premium sports drink with natural caffeine.
The drink uses the same coconut water based formula as Bodyarmor sports drink, with 1,000mg hydrating electrolytes, plus 100mg of natural caffeine (around the same as a cup of coffee).
Bodyarmor Edge comes in a 20oz bottle and contains antioxidants, natural flavors and sweeteners with no colors from artificial sources. It is available in stores nationwide and online via Amazon in Berry Blitz, Tropical Chaos, Power Punch and Orange Frenzy flavors.
As the #2 sports drink in the US, the brand now generates more than $1bn in retail sales and sees its mission as redefining the $40bn active hydration category.
Baileys Deliciously Light
Diageo brand Baileys has launched Baileys Deliciously Light in the US: made with 40% less sugar and 40% less calories than Baileys Original Irish Cream.
Baileys Deliciously Light is a “delicious and versatile new product offering that can be enjoyed in a variety of ways including over ice, chilled, in a smoothie or with hot, iced or whipped coffee so you now have more occasions to treat yourself including daytime celebrations, brunch and many more.”
The product is now available nationwide across the US (wherever spirits-based beverages are sold) for a suggested retail price of $24.99 for a 750mL format.
Angry Orchard is releasing two new hard fruit ciders in the US this month: Peach Mango and Strawberry.
Angry Orchard’s 5% ABV fruit ciders are ‘perfectly blended by combining traditional bittersweet apples (the gold standard for cider making) with peaches, mangos and strawberries for a juicy, naturally sweet cider with a balanced finish.’
Fruit ciders are the fastest growing style within the cider category, accounting for 86% of growth in 2020, according to IRI figures.
“As drinkers continue to gravitate toward full-flavored options within adult beverage, with fruit flavors leading the charge as a hero ingredient, Angry Orchard will bring flavor news and variety to the cider space.
"And, coming off the strength of the brand’s flagship cider Crisp Apple growing 8.5% in 2020 , we look forward to growth in 2021,” says the brand.
Greek premium functional beverage brand INTEA has launched its range of Functional Mount Olympus tea products in supermarket chain AB Vassilopoulos.
Produced by Athens-based company Inbeverages, the range uses ingredients from Greek nature.
“The base ingredient in all our teas is the old Greek Mount Olympus tea (a caffeine-free tea), known for its beneficial properties for thousands of years which in turn is enriched with traditional, Greek medicinal herbs depending on the functionality of each SKU produced,” says the brand.
Each of the first five SKU’s are available in either biodegradable pyramid bags or Nespresso machine compatible capsules.
Chewable yogurt drinks
Dairy Farming Promotion Organization of Thailand (DPO) has launched the Chew-D range of ambient yogurt drinks, which contain chewable pieces for a ‘healthy yet interesting new taste experience’.
The fat-free and low sugar passion fruit-flavoured yogurt drink contains chewable pearls from the konjac plant, which grows in the tropics.
The drinks are made using SIG’s drinksplus technology, and are packaged in combiblocMini 200ml carton packs and filled on the company’s standard filling machines. The technology can fill beverages containing up to 10% pieces – from fruit and vegetables to nuts and grains.
Heineken slim cans
Heineken will launch in slim cans in Florida next month: seeking to give its beer a more premium and modern image.
“The Heineken Original Slim Can launch in Florida has emerged from millennial and multi-cultural demand,” says Chuck Boddy, Senior Brand Manager for the Heineken brand. “With over 20% of can volume in the category now being sold in slim cans , we see an opportunity to further capitalize on growth trends to accelerate Heineken’s can business in the US.
“We want to capitalize on these trends with a refreshed, rejuvenated version of Heineken Original cans to drive brand and category growth, as consumers perceive Heineken Original slim cans to be more premium, modern, and classy than the current can offering.”
The cans will be available in both on and off-premise accounts in Florida; with the potential for a national roll-out to follow in 2022 if successful.