Kerry debuts next-generation botanical extracts for low- and no-alcohol beverages

Dive Brief:

  • Kerry is rolling out Botanicals Collection Zero 2.0, a new generation of botanical extracts containing 0% ethanol that are designed for low- and no-alcohol beverage applications, such as mocktails.
  • In comparison to other ethanol-free technologies, Kerry claimed the new offerings are more stable, with no haze or sedimentation, and a more complex botanical taste and mouthfeel. The range of options include fruit; floral; and spice and brown tonalities such as passion fruit, rosebud, elderflower, caraway, black pepper, cumin, cocoa and coffee.

  • The ingredients from Kerry come as more consumers turn to natural food and beverages, and once-shunned low- and no-alcohol beverages gain popularity with drinkers. 

Dive Insight:

While much of the focus in alcohol is often on the clever names and unique flavor combinations, the ingredients are the big contributor to the product’s overall appeal. As tastes change, those ingredients need to evolve as well.

Kerry’s latest lineup, which includes cocoa, fruit, coffee and even black pepper varieties, takes those ingredients a step further by removing many of the obstacles that can impact the mouthfeel and the appearance of the beverage and make the drink less enticing for the consumer. The new generation of ingredients were created using a proprietary extraction and distillation processing method, Kerry said.

The new collection “delivers not only the fresh notes from the first generation but also now more complex flavours that remind us of those found in traditional alcoholic beverages,” Francis De Campos Ferreira, global taste portfolio director for selected extracts at Kerry, said in a statement. 

The taste and nutrition company said Botanicals Collection Zero 2.0 addresses clean-label and authentic-quality requirements while creating a premium drinking experience for those seeking to moderate their alcohol consumption. This, combined with the increase in demand for low- and no-alcohol drinks, give the extracts two major attributes that should work simultaneously in their favor. 

Figures from Nielsen in 2019 noted 66% of millennials said they’re making efforts to reduce their alcohol consumption. Other consumers also are cutting back, either for health reasons or because they don’t want the buzzy feeling that comes with consuming too many of them. Increasingly, low- and no-alcohol drinks are a popular option for alcohol makers to retain and even attract these consumers to their portfolio depending on their mood, time of the week or occasion.

Companies such as Kin and Ritual have grown in popularity among consumers looking to drink without the booze. Even Diageo, owner of brands such as Johnnie Walker, Captain Morgan and Don Julio, tapped into this trend in 2019 by purchasing a majority share in London-based Seedlip, the world’s first distilled nonalcoholic spirits brand. 

As trends such as natural ingredients and low- and no-alcohol continue to gain in popularity, it’s imperative that for the momentum to continue, the right set of ingredients be available for companies to tap into. Without them, the growth could slow or decline altogether as consumers become turned off by the appearance, taste and product attributes of the products.

Kerry and other flavor and ingredients suppliers have to not only provide what their customers want now, but also take a forward-looking view to anticipate where the trends are going. The new Botanicals Collection Zero gives Kerry a favorable position in both of these areas.

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