Brew Dr. Kombucha’s new line packaged in aluminum cans may assist woo clients hesitant to give kombucha a attempt.

Longtime kombucha fanatics possible know that explaining what the beverage is to nondrinkers has at all times been difficult. A fizzy tea that’s fermented with a slimy, mushroom-like SCOBY—a symbiotic culture of micro organism and yeast—that’s generally referred to as “The Mother”? Oh, and it’s bitter and vinegary?

Yeah … doesn’t sound too appetizing.

But gross sales knowledge present that each pure and traditional shoppers are embracing this probiotic-packed drink at surprisingly excessive charges. In early 2018, SPINS discovered that U.S. retail gross sales of kombucha grew a whopping 37.four % in 2017 to $556 million—a determine that doesn’t embrace gross sales knowledge from Whole Foods Market or Costco—that means precise gross sales are possible a lot larger. Plus, Euromonitor International predicts that by 2019, U.S. kombucha gross sales will attain a crazy-high $656.7 million.

According to Matt Thomas, founder and CEO of Brew Dr. Kombucha, a USDA Organic model distributed throughout the United States and Canada, gross sales aren’t going to fizzle anytime quickly. Rather, there’s ample room for kombucha to proceed its bubbly, tangential progress.

“The fact remains that still just a small percent of the population even has an idea of what kombucha is,” Thomas says. “There is a huge opportunity to continue educating and innovating on kombucha in the United States. ‘Kombucha’ is a funny word. Fermented tea with bacteria and yeast is a funny idea. And for a long time, it was seen as a yoga-hippie drink.”

Improving kombucha’s accessibility is a key approach to foster extra kombucha shoppers throughout the United States. Brew Dr.’s just lately launched kombucha packaged in aluminum cans is a promising approach to entice extra mainstream buyers.

Sold in 4 packs not not like craft beer, Brew Dr. successfully transforms kombucha—which has traditionally been bought in as a premium beverage in glass bottles—into an on a regular basis product appropriate for sharing at barbecues.

“Kombucha is coming out of its infancy,” Thomas says. “And all the brands have grown up in the single-serve glass bottle that indicates craft and quality. The can gives us an opportunity to be stocked and consumed everywhere—where glass can’t be.” The cans are additionally simply crushable, making them well-suited to tote alongside on a hike.

Aluminum cans earn environmental bonus factors over glass, too—an necessary issue to Thomas, as he’s spent the final yr readying Brew Dr. to be a Certified B Corporation, which requires corporations to concentrate to their environmental impression, amongst different mission-based enterprise practices. Aluminum is lighter than glass, which mitigates carbon emissions related to heavy freight. Aluminum cans also have a better recycling track record than glass—evaluate aluminum’s 67 % recycling fee to the abysmal 26.four % for glass.

Ultimately, Thomas views kombucha’s meteoric rise as a sign that value-added useful drinks—maybe much more so than flavored glowing water—have essentially the most promising progress alternative in beverage. Kombucha is capturing market share from the vast majority of RTD drinks within the grab-and-go chilly case, together with coconut water, sugary cold-pressed juices and, in fact, conventional sodas.

But there’s nonetheless a good distance to go. Thomas would love to see kombucha stocked in additional typical c-stores and even in gasoline stations. More on-shelf visibility will help all kombucha corporations develop, and assist extra mainstream shoppers transition away from much less wholesome drinks. The problem is getting such buyers to attempt it. Placing the beverage in a recognizable aluminum can may encourage buyers to take step one to having fun with kombucha day-after-day.

This article initially appeared on NewHope.com.

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