The confluence of convenience and health & wellness trends in non-alcoholic beverages is Gama’s focus this week, as we take a look at a recent development in the green tea category – Teaforia Shake & Brew Cold Brewing Green Tea Bags.
New in the UK, Teaforia Shake & Brew is a concept that allows consumers to drink green tea on the go. Essentially a conventional teabag but with an elongated shape, Shake & Brew, which comes in original and jasmine varieties, is designed to fit inside the neck of a standard water bottle, meaning – as promotional material from manufacturer Zacely advertises – “anywhere you can drink a bottle of water you can drink Shake & Brew green tea!”
As Gama discovered when it visited the Food & Drink Expo in March, green tea continues to be a major focal point for innovation activity in the health and functional drinks category. No doubt benefiting from the multiple functional benefits that continue to be ascribed to it – from cancer prevention to weight loss support and anti-aging properties – green tea has seen sales steadily climb, especially in the UK. And, as consumers seek an alternative to conventional black tea, green tea also often wins out with its low caffeine content and its “fresher”, more delicate flavour, particularly when it comes to RTD teas and health-oriented nutraceutical drinks.
Shake & Brew meanwhile also taps into the growing trend for “water enhancement”, which has been increasingly disruptive in beverage categories and has led many companies to diversify their portfolios. Broadly initiated by the launch of Kraft’s Mio brand in 2011, “water enhancers” have begun to usurp traditional beverage concentrates and are now estimated to have reached a market value in excess of $400 million per year. Tea has not been immune to the trend, with products such as concentrated liquid tea now beginning to make an appearance on retail shelves.
Concepts such as Shake & Brew are in indication of how the “water enhancement” trend might further develop. Beyond simple convenient flavour enhancement, there is room for producers looking to meet the demand for “fresh”, “real” and “healthy”. For manufacturers of functional products, allying these multiple consumer priorities with on-the-go convenience could be a strategy that pays dividends.
Additional sources: Teaforia/ Zenith International