‘Coffee meets tea’: Nescafe China touts dual beverage experience with upcycled cascara drink line

By Pearly Neo

- Last updated on GMT

Nestle China has launched an upcycled cascara beverage line that offers consumers a dual ‘coffee meets tea’ drinking experience.  ©Nescafe China/Nestle China
Nestle China has launched an upcycled cascara beverage line that offers consumers a dual ‘coffee meets tea’ drinking experience. ©Nescafe China/Nestle China

Related tags Nestlé Nescafe China Coffee Tea cascara

Nestle China has launched an upcycled cascara beverage line that offers consumers a dual ‘coffee meets tea’ drinking experience, tapping on the strong local demand for teas and rapid new product innovation.

Nestle first launched its cascara drinks in Australia​ in 2021 under the Nescafe Nativ Cascara brand, where this was marketed as a better-for-you product marking the start of a new ‘adult social beverage’ category.

The firm has just launched this in China as well, but taken a very different approach to marketing here, choosing to focus on a ‘coffee meets tea’ appeal.

“This is a ‘new species’ of beverage coming from innovation using cascara, the dried skins of coffee cherries, and is set to bring consumers a new and unique sensory experience,” ​Nestle Greater China Coffee Business Unit SVP Alfonso Troisi told FoodNavigator-Asia​.

“Our new Guoran Light Coffee combines the characteristics of both coffee and tea using the unique properties of cascara, creating a new cross-category product that fuses both coffee culture and Chinese tea culture.

“This is based on in-depth research into China’s coffee and tea markets, where we have found that the local beverage scene is constantly evolving and consumer tastes are becoming more and more diversified.

“There is also increased demand from younger conusmers for information on coffee origins as well as prominent demand for items that can are healthy, fresh and innovative enough to satisfy their quest for novel and curious product choices.”

Guoran Light Coffee will be launched in two flavours: Refreshing Original and Elegant White Tea. The flavour is described as ‘coffee meets tea’, with zero sugar and fat content but a small amount of natural caffeine from the cascara itself that would bring about a slight energy boost.

“We expect this collision of categories to forge a new path in the coffee industry, expand the dimensions of coffee product innovation as well as inject fresh vitality into this sector,”​ he added.

Yunnan cascara

Nestle China sources the majority of its coffee from Yunnan, and believes that this new cascara range can be a major part of its sustainability efforts in this region due to the upcycling processes involved.

“Guoran Light Coffee’s cascara is sourced from Yunnan coffee berries, in what is considered the golden area of coffee cultivation,”​ Nestle China RTD Coffee Business Director Li Yichen added.

“The use of the cascara improves the utilisation rate of the coffee berries via upcycling so these are not wasted, and also expands the coffee product track whilst promoting the diversification of Yunnan’s coffee industry.

“Nestle views the research an development into cascara upcycling as an important application within the concept of circular economy that we are developing in Yunnan to ensure sustainable coffee development here as well as economic growth and improved livelihoods for the farmers in this region.

“We also look at the use of regenerative agriculture here to improve soil health and fertility such that carbon sequestration can be increased and greenhouse gas emissions reduced, alongside the improvement of water circulation and biodiversity so as to increase overall crop yields and thus farmer incomes.”

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