September 7, 2022
Health and wellness trends come and go, but the current that runs through what most of the health-conscious audience has demanded in recent years can be summed up in one word: clean. In addition to fewer, cleaner, higher-quality ingredients, the health-focused audience also wants those ingredients to DO something. Keep them awake, calm them down, and make them feel great.
Perhaps as a reaction to the increase in problematic alcohol consumption during lockdown, and as a result of younger audiences wanting to live a healthier lifestyle, zero-proof drinks have exploded in the beverage industry. Not really a mocktail, zero-proof beverages are drinks that are meant to taste like an expertly crafted cocktail, but without any of the detrimental health effects of alcohol and free of the dreaded hangover that they could bring the next morning. This is a largely youth-driven trend, with almost half of the Millenial audience saying that they would give up alcohol completely in order to improve their overall health.
But just because this audience wants to slow down on the alcohol, it doesn’t mean that they don’t want to be part of the party. Teetotalers are an underserved market, and the restaurant business would be wise to tap into this ever-growing segment of the food and beverage industry– after all, a delicious zero-proof drink is more friendly to the bottom line and is much more exciting to drink than a glass of lukewarm tap water.
Tagging along for the ride on the popularity of the zero-proof trend is the increase of mood-boosting drinks in the beverage market. With at least 2 out of 3 the adult audience stating experienced increased stress during the pandemic, it’s no wonder that people are simply looking to chill out and relax. Many of these beverages contain ingredients called nootropics, a class of ingredients that are claimed to boost mental functions, such as memory, mood, and overall creativity. Examples of nootropics include medicinal mushrooms and Lion’s Mane, which are both known to enhance focus and memory.
Adaptogens, another common ingredient in many of these beverages, are known for counteracting the effects that stress has on the body. These include ashwagandha and ginseng, among others. CBD is also a key ingredient, which is no surprise, considering the steady rise in the use of all manner of CBD products, across the wellness, beauty, and food and beverage industries. It should be noted that as this is a new category of the food and beverage market, there is no reliable medical research on the actual benefits of these products.
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