Natural Ingredients Driving Innovation for Energy Drink Brands

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Food Business News recently published a story on how energy drink brands are developing new energy drinks with natural and sustainably-sourced ingredients. Even as bottled water has taken over as the nation’s leading beverage, there are still people who prefer a drink with a little taste and energy. However, they are paying closer attention to ingredients and as a result, energy drink brands are having to find ways to create clean label products.

Energy Drink Brands Look to Natural Herbs

Companies are finding natural ingredients with energy-related properties in natural herbs. A great example is FutureCeuticals’ organic Coffeeberry brand. The ingredient contains whole coffee cherries and no chemical solvents. Another growing company is HiBall Energy, and they use guarana and ginseng to enhance the energy experience of their beverages.

Mintel pointed out earlier this year that green tea is one of the ingredients on the rise in energy drink brands. A number of companies have taken notes and as a result, seen growth over the past few years.

Shift in Target Market Fueling New Growth

The millennial market is maturing and moving out of college into the real world. They are learning the hard lessons of the real world and need a pick me up! Natural energy drinks are perfect for their needs and wants. Energy drink brands need to focus on bold and edgy flavors to compete with teas and flavored waters as the beverage market heats up.

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Energy Drink Industry Reached Record Global Sales in 2015

Energy drinks are all the rage these days. People are fascinated with the idea that a drink will give them enough energy for all their daily activities. But how is the energy drink industry faring these days? In the study conducted by research firm, Mintel, it revealed that the number of energy drinks launched in 2015 surpassed the previous highest number recorded in 2008. Between 2010 and 2015, the numbers of energy drinks have grown by 29%. The key country leading the industry is Germany which had the highest share of new energy drinks at 9% launched in 2015.

However, it is not just the new products that are booming. The sales volume of traditional energy drinks rose by 10% globally which is translated to around 8.8 billion liters. The top markets for energy drinks regarding volume sales include U.S. (at 3.3 billion liters), China (at 1.4 billion liters), UK (at 561 million liters), Thailand (at 465 million liters), and Vietnam (at 351 million liters).

The Popularity of Energy Drinks

So why is there such a massive increase in the sales of energy drinks? Mintel’s Global Food and Drink Analyst Alex Beckett noted that while there is a huge controversy surrounding energy drinks, it remains successful because of its promise to deliver a quick energy boost to consumers. And this is something that resonates with consumers all over the world.


Moreover, major brands are devoted to investing in advertising as well as creating high profile initiatives to give energy drinks an exciting image. To make the products more appealing, Mintel noticed that many brands are now introducing organic claims to promote their products for people who are on a clean eating lifestyle.

In fact, 7% of the energy drinks that have been launched in 2015 have an organic claim. This is 3% higher compared to the products launched in 2011.  The products that have been launched with organic claims are 58% greater in Europe than anywhere else in the world with North America (39%) and Latin America (3%) trailing behind.


All-Organic Claims

The study confirmed that 26% of the consumers in the US are more comfortable drinking energy drinks that are made from natural ingredients while those in Europe opt for products that contain natural flavors and colorings. This trend is also observed among Chinese consumers where 40% are motivated to buy products that are made from natural ingredients.

The most important target market for energy drinks is young parents who are very self-conscious of the types of drinks they consume. The Mintel research reveals that these kinds of parents are also responsible for motivating their children to drink energy drinks.

This trend indicates that the energy drink sector is trying its best to appeal to a wider range of audiences. It also implies pressure on the rest of the energy drink manufacturers to formulate a new line of drinks that come with better and healthier ingredients.

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Millennials Enjoy Energy Drinks Even With Safety Concerns

Over and over, concerns have been raised by the consumption of some of the ingredients in energy drinks and shots. From these concerns, we would expect the use of these products to go down as people strive to have a healthy lifestyle, but this is far from the reality. The consumption of energy drinks and shots have been on the rise. In America, it is expected that their consumption will continue to increase, especially among the millennials. A new report indicates that millennial consumption of energy drinks increased to 61% in a period of one year, this was a 6 % rise from the figures recorded in 2014. This is despite the fact that the Millennials express their reservations and concerns for energy drinks. 

Energy Drinks Need Warnings & Better Labeling

A significant percentage of energy drink consumers feel that manufacturers should provide more information to help the users make an informed decision. Customers are asking manufacturers to include details on the healthy amount that should be consumed on a daily basis. The labeling will help consumers avoid a situation where they drink more than is necessary. 

Consumer Behavior Explained

Energy drink consumers are aware of the dangers they put themselves in from consuming energy drinks, but surprisingly this does not stop them from consuming the products. Lifestyle changes have been partially blamed for the increased consumption. Older millennials are experiencing new situations like getting married or having kids that require more energy; this makes them resort to energy drinks to supplement those increased energy requirements. These same people display brand loyalty and have a potential of using the drinks for a longer period compared to other groups.

It is widely agreed and known that some of the ingredients used in making energy drinks are not healthy, but this seems to be a small concern to the majority of the consumers. They continue to take the drinks despite the concerns… With this kind of situation, it will take more than safety warnings to help people in making informed decisions about how they can lead a healthy lifestyle.

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Create Cleaner Labels with Simpler Ingredients

Energy drink manufacturers are going to be affected by the growing health and nutrition trend in the United States. The data from Mintel may indicate that millennials still enjoy energy drinks, but that trend is set to change. Consumers are demanding food and beverage products to use simpler ingredients and cleaner labels.

It’s time to experience NutriFusion®. Our GrandFusion blends are made from non-GMO fruits and vegetables to help processors use simpler ingredients to enhance the nutrition of their products. We patented a method for nutrient stabilization so that our ingredients can withstand the intensity of heating and cooling in modern day processing. If your brand is interested in learning more about our products, please visit our beverages page.