A novel mix

Many of us can recall the thrill of making that first home-made cocktail. You scour the shelves of retailers for an army of drinks before you start concocting. What happens when you add a rather unappealing ingredient? What’s deemed gross becomes a little better and the delicious becomes a little gross. Key is to get the balance of flavour offset by bitterness and something in the region of a good body to make it vaguely drinkable.
The alcoholic drinks industry, like many others, is experiencing an interesting journey currently. Regulatory changes and barriers, demographic shifts, changing consumer preferences, and increased concern about health are just some of the reasons why the market place has been disrupted.
The focus on something new, different, and exciting is increasing and leading flavour developments. Consumers are more willing than ever to try new flavours – natural, clean label and healthier options are where we’re at.

In a category not typically associated with health, translating this trend into the sector isn’t easy. There’s a disparity between what consumers say they want (health benefits) and what they actually want (a nice tasting product). If brands are aware of this, they will be able to satisfy the ever-complicated consumer.

Consumers have a thirst for novelty and drinks companies are scrambling to slake it.

‘New Discoveries’ emerges as the leader in Innova Market Insights’ Top Flavor Trends for 2019. Among other trends it’s witnessing are:

  • Brands leaning towards more remarkable and unusual flavour hybrids.
  • Established flavours reinvented.
  • Authentic-style ethnic alternatives.
  • Ingredients with a natural source of umami taste.

In an era that’s about appearance, it’s becoming apparent that even the alcohol we drink, is more and more focused on not just appearance. While the beverage market is innovating to address consumer interest, taste and flavour remain the most influential reasons for consumption. No matter how healthy a drink is, if it doesn’t taste good consumers won’t buy it, and the amount of available products on the market makes it easy for consumers to simply move to another option. As such, coloured and interestingly flavoured drinks are proving ever popular with consumers, creating a path which the rest of the industry will follow.

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