Innova: Superfruits continue to dominate beverage flavors

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CHICAGO — Herbs, spices, honey, superfruits and other healthy flavors are driving flavor trends in the global beverage market, according to Innova Market Insights.

Superfruits are continuing to grow in popularity globally. Pomegranate is the most popular superfruit flavor as it was contained in more than 40% of beverage launches from June 2008 to May 2013 that featured superfruit flavors. This compared with acai at 12.5% and lychee at 12%. Up and coming superfruit flavors include guanabana/soursop, cactus/prickly pear and marula.

Click here to view infographic of popular beverage flavors.

“Cactus/prickly pear is one of the emerging superfruit flavors in the North American beverage market,” said Lu Ann Williams, head of research at Innova. “U.S. launches over the past year include Cactus Juice and Cactus Tea from Nopal and Prickly Pear Cactus Tea from Hunter & Hilsberg, as well as Martinelli’s Prickly Passion Lemonade juice drink, featuring prickly pear puree.”

Vegetable flavors also are doing well, especially in combination with fruit flavors in juices, smoothies and teas. In fact, the number of beverage launches containing celery increased six-fold in 2012, and introductions with cucumber and beets doubled during this time. There also have been introductions with kale.

Hot and spicy flavors are making their way into beverages with products featuring black pepper and chilis, including habanero, jalapeño and chipotle.

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