What’s hitting the shelves? New product launches: August

KeVita adds two flavors to its Master Brew Kombucha line

From energy drinks sweetened with monk fruit to functional bottled waters, we take a look at some of the new products launching in the beverage category around the globe. 

Johnnie Walker limited editions

Scotch whisky Johnnie Walker has launched three experimental whiskies from its Blenders' Batch range.

Johnnie Walker Blenders' Batch Wine Cask Blend, Johnnie Walker Blenders' Batch Rum Cask Finish and Johnnie Walker Blenders' Batch Espresso Roast have been designed to 'form the foundation of exceptional Scotch cocktails and... can also be enjoyed straight up over ice.'

Johnnie Walker Blenders' Batch Wine Cask Blend is launching in selected countries from next month with an RRP from $29.99.

Blenders' Batch Rum Cask Finish and Blenders' Batch Espresso Roast will be available worldwide in select bars from October 2017.

Guru Energy turns to monk fruit

Guru, a Quebec-based all-natural energy drink company, has launched Organic Lite using monk fruit as a natural sweetener, saying it is a first in Canada.

Originally from Southeast Asia, the monk fruit flesh has a sweetening power 300 times that of white sugar.

Carl Goyette, vice-president of sales and marketing, said: "Organic Lite was a challenge for us because we wanted to remain faithful to the taste of the original product. We are thrilled to introduce monk fruit, a natural sweetener with remarkable benefits.”

Organic Lite is approved by ECOCERT Canada and verified GMO-free, gluten-free and vegan, and contains 20 calories. Guru drinks are infused with organic energizing plants (green tea, ginseng, guarana, echinacea) and enhanced by other ingredients such as organic stevia and lemon juice, as well as juice from monk fruit.

KeVita new flavors: blueberry basil and roots beer

Kevita, a US manufacturer of fermented probiotic and kombucha beverages, has added two flavors, blueberry basil and roots beer, to the Master Brew Kombucha line.

“Blueberry Basil combines two delicious flavors to create a fun spin on classic kombucha, with the slightly floral blueberry offset by a peppery basil kick.

“The refreshingly brisk Roots Beer boasts a blend of earthy roots, along with cinnamon and vanilla for a modern alternative to root beer soda.”

Each bottle contains live probiotics, active cultures, organic acids, organic caffeine and just 35 calories per 8-ounce serving. The two new additions join the KeVita Master Brew Kombucha family of 11 flavors, which include Ginger, Pineapple Peach, Tart Cherry, Dragonfruit Lemongrass, Citrus and Raspberry Lemon.

The drinks are available at Whole Foods Markets nationwide. 

Zola hydrating energy drink line

Zola has launched an Organic Hydrating Energy Drink line with Sparkling Coconut Water in the US. The drinks are USDA organic certified and available in four flavors: Açaí Berry, Matcha Green Tea, Pineapple Coconut and Dragon Fruit.

Each 12oz can has potassium to hydrate and energy sourced from green coffee and green tea extracts.

“This line of beverages is the next evolution in the brand’s commitment to Plant-Powered Hydration –  a delicious and easy way to get all-important replenishment from only the best plant-based ingredients Mother Nature can supply,” says the brand.

Premium loose leaf tea

Good Earth Teas, a brand from Tata Global Beverages, has launched a range of premium loose leaf teas, featuring: coconut crush, turmeric chai, puerh thins, rosa de Jamaica, and hathikuli organic.

The teas are packaged in reusable metal tins ‘to indicate what epicurean tastes await inside’, as well as keeping teas as fresh as possible. Sold online in the US, prices vary from $9.99 to $12.99 per tin, with some varieties available exclusively in loose leaf form and others in tea sachets.

Dhwani Kothari, global brand manager at Good Earth Teas, said: “Tea drinking is on the rise in the US, but unlike some other countries, this has long been a coffee-centric culture. Many of us have not had an opportunity to experience exotic tea blends from around the world – and that can make the path to tea discovery daunting, to say the least.

“That’s why Good Earth has curated a collection of exceptional loose leaf teas that are presented beautifully on our new and improved website. Visitors can quickly sense what’s ‘in the tin’ – and whether or not it might be right for them. By taking out the guesswork, the teaventure is completely positive.”

Lucozade launches functional bottled water

Lucozade Sport has launched a bottled water brand, Lucozade Sport Fitwater, in the UK.

The functional drink contains four key electrolytes: sodium, chloride, magnesium and calcium.

Lucozade sees that people are doing gentler exercise more frequently. Fitwater therefore hopes to appeal to a broader group of fitness enthusiasts who are doing less intense training, not purely endurance sport that has traditionally been at the core of the Lucozade Sport audience.

Zero sugar functional energy drink

Sports supplements business ICON Nutrition has launched ‘ICON Go BCAA Zero’ - a zero sugar energy drink with added essential amino acids, in a ‘grab and go’ can in the UK.

Traditionally marketed in a powder form, the company believes there is growing demand from busy consumers for a ready mixed high energy drink with functional benefits from Vitamin B6 and BCAAs. The drink includes BCAAs (branched chain amino acids), which are the building blocks of protein that aid the body’s recovery and performance. 

Each 330ml can of ICON Go BCAA Zero incorporates 5,000mg of functional BCAAs, provides 100% RDA of vitamin B6, 125mg caffeine and zero sugar. 

Shaun Gibbins, co-owner of ICON Nutrition, comments: “People want convenience and that means a RTD product without the fuss of powders and mixing. As we supply products to over 500 gyms, we tend to hear first-hand what our health conscious customers want and we believe we’re ahead of the game with this product. 

“We expect it to also strike a chord with consumers on-the-go who are looking for something to give them an energy boost, whether they’re in a convenience store, a supermarket or a garage forecourt.”

Organic cola

Gusto Organic, a UK premium drinks brand, has launched two colas in 275m bottles: Gusto Organic Real Cola and Gusto Naturally Slim Cola.

Both colas are Fairtrade certified and are a blend of organic spices and essential oils with cola nut from the rainforests of Africa; Fairtrade bourbon vanilla from Madagascar; and are sweetened with Fairtrade and organic blue agave from Jalisco in Mexico. The cola is made in Devon, UK, with spring water from the hills of Exmoor.

“We have reduced the calories in our organic Real Cola by 20% with a light touch of organic erythritol, and have reduced calories further in our Naturally Slim cola with a blend of organic stevia, erythritol and blue agave,” explains William Fugard, MD.

Gusto Organic has listings with Whole Foods, Ocado, and restaurant chains such as The Natural Kitchen.

Ugly Drinks launches new flavors

Ugly Drinks is rolling out three additional fruit-flavored sparkling waters in the UK this month.

The sugar-free range has added Triple Berry, Orange, and Tropical flavors (with Tropical replacing Grapefruit and Pineapple).

The new flavors join the existing lemon and lime flavor.

The ‘anti-soda’ waters are 100% natural and free from sugar, sweeteners and artificial ingredients.

Redesigned bottle for Captain Morgan

Captain Morgan is launching a revamped bottle design in the US this month.

With updates made to the embossing, cap and label, the bottles are designed to give the rum brand a more modern look.

“The new embossing highlights the Captain Morgan logo, while the updated cap canvas design depicts more of the Captain’s adventure,” says the brand.

“The Captain himself has a revamped look on the label as well, standing proudly on the branded barrel. The label also features a cigar band, which is used to showcase the variant name. Lastly, gold foils are woven in throughout the label to give the bottle a more premium look.”

Cornish brewery redesigns bottles

Also boasting a new look is St Austell Brewery’s bottled beers in the UK.

As well as changes to the labels which celebrate St Austell Brewery’s knowledge, innovation and heritage, the beers come in a new shape, 500ml bottles designed specifically for the company, which is the largest independent brewery in Cornwall. The bottle is taller, and ‘St Austell’ – the brewery’s home - is embossed around the neck.

Jeremy Mitchell, marketing and communications director, St Austell Brewery, said: “To create standout, the branding encapsulates all the attributes that we’re proud of: passion, heritage, independence and quality ingredients. 

“To create stronger shelf presence, the bottles are higher, and each beer has a bespoke label around the top which eludes to the characteristics of the brand. The bottles celebrate our history at the same time as carrying a bold new contemporary look.”

The brand and packaging overhaul was carried out by Brighton-based CookChick.

Edinburgh Gin: bottles from artisan glassmakers

Edinburgh Gin’s fruit gin liqueurs will use a new bespoke bottle design - the same as the distiller’s iconic core range – as of September.

Hand-blown by artisan glassmakers in Italy, the bottles feature an embossed Edinburgh Gin logo and illustrations of signature ingredients such as Perthshire raspberries and Madagascan vanilla.

The portfolio features four fruit gin liqueurs: Raspberry Liqueur, Elderflower Liqueur, Plum and Vanilla Liqueur, and Rhubarb and Ginger Liqueur.

Neil Boyd, commercial director for Ian Macleod Distillers, said: "Over the last 12 - 18 months, we've seen the fruit gin liqueurs become a staple cocktail ingredient for those creating diverse and dynamic cocktails with Scottish gin at their heart. They are also equally as enjoyable when added to a glass of prosecco.

“Premium and versatile, the fruit gin liqueurs are among our best-loved spirits and we have no doubt the new designs will only increase their popularity further.”

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