Spotlight on the health halo of green tea27 Jan 2020
Green tea has gained an enormous amount of attention for its high antioxidant content, and new studies continue to back multiple benefits for the beverage and its extracts – despite uncertainty over how these benefits are delivered.
A growing body of research suggests green tea could play a role in protecting against risk factors for cardiovascular disease, such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol, in weight management, and even in preventing the spread of certain cancer cells. One recent study suggested that at the age of 50, regular green tea drinkers would gain 1.41 years free from heart disease and 1.26 years of life expectancy. But no one is certain of the reasons for these purported effects.
Such research has prompted food and beverage makers to include green tea and its extracts in a wide range of products, from drinks, supplements and dairy products, to cakes and confectionery. The market for tea polyphenols in functional beverages alone is growing rapidly, at a CAGR of 8.5%, according to Global Market Insights. It suggests the market for these micronutrients could reach a value of US$340 million by 2024.
Japanese matcha green tea is the latest hot ingredient in the segment, appearing most often in beverages like smoothies and juices, but also in baked goods and pancake mixes, to which it gives a bright green colour. According to Mintel, it has also started appearing in a growing number of natural energy drinks, as consumers increasingly look for natural botanical ingredients, less sweet formulations, and alternatives to synthetic caffeine. Suppliers like SternVitamin, Indena and Sabinsa are among those exploring the potential of green tea extracts in functional drinks, including for the natural energy sector.
However, manufacturers must be cautious in advertising the effects of green tea on product packaging, as overstating its supposed benefits could get them into regulatory hot water.
That said, while consumers might have difficulty naming and embracing the many claimed benefits of green tea, it certainly profits from a health halo. Euromonitor International has found younger consumers in particular are interested in premium tea varieties, meaning it may make sense to focus on its natural, plant-based, relatively exotic origins to appeal to this demographic.
At the other end of the age spectrum, the market researcher has suggested that green tea could be the ideal vehicle for brain health ingredients for older consumers looking to prevent cognitive decline. Swiss researchers have suggested that certain compounds in green tea could help with memory performance, and although it lacks a definite health claim, green tea could benefit from its well-known association with living a long, healthy life.
Wile Women embraces perimenopause ecosystem with support and education
6 Oct 2023
Wile Women, a US-based direct-to-consumer supplement brand, offers “naturopathic” products designed to address women’s mental health and aims to break the stigma surrounding perimenopause.Read more
Lahori Zeera’s spiced soft drinks ‘resonate with the Indian taste palette’
5 Oct 2023
Indian soda brand Lahori Zeera is on a mission to become the largest non-cola drinks brand in the country with its fruit-based soda drinks, available in flavours such as tamarind, lemon, and black pepper. “The ethnic beverages market in India is unders...Read more
Redistributing unwanted food to those in need: A cost- and hassle-free solution
4 Oct 2023
London-based charity City Harvest is solving the longstanding issues of food waste and hunger by providing food businesses with a convenient and cost-free solution to redistributing food waste.Read more
Advocacy groups condemn EU Commission for backpedalling on animal rights
3 Oct 2023
Amid rumours that the EU may abandon its plans to improve animal welfare in farming and end the use of cages, many stakeholders have condemned this possibility and urged the EU to reconsider.Read more
Smuckers, Hostess deal latest food industry mega merger
2 Oct 2023
The J.M. Smucker Co. is to acquire fellow American snack company Hostess Brands for approximately $5.6 billion, following several other high-profile mergers in food and snacks so far in 2023.Read more
Poland and Ukraine attempt to resolve grain dispute
29 Sep 2023
Poland and Ukraine have begun talks to try to resolve a dispute regarding the ban on Kyiv’s grain imports that prompted Kyiv to file a lawsuit to the World Trade Organization.Read more
HN-Novatech launches seaweed heme ingredient in Singapore
28 Sep 2023
Korean food technology company HN-Novatech secures $4 million in funding and has unveiled a proprietary seaweed heme ingredient for healthy plant-based alternatives in Singapore.Read more
The EU may be set to scrap its sustainability commitments
27 Sep 2023
A speech delivered by President Ursula von der Leyen last week inferred that the EU could be drawing back on its commitments to create a more sustainable and healthier food system.Read more
Nutri-Score will be implemented in the Netherlands in 2024
20 Sep 2023
Nutri-Score will be adopted as the official – but voluntary – food choice logo in the Netherlands from 1 January 2024, the Dutch government confirms. How will this impact the industry?Read more
Proudly made in China: Tips to tap into the guochao trend with success
19 Sep 2023
Thanks to the guochao trend, Chinese consumers see ‘Made in China’ products as trendy and Western brands are capitalising on this with regional flavours or Chinese-style branding. But guochao has become more nuanced and consumers are increasingly wise ...Read more