Instead, Pepsi has brought out a craft cola brand in the US – Caleb’s Kola – while rival Coca-Cola has gone for “better-for-you” choices in the form of its Coke Life brand, launched last summer.
Indeed craft soda will be good bet for operators looking to remain ahead of the curve this year, but what about beyond that?
Drawing on the excellent Lost in Catering report (see story left/right), we can identify some of the emerging macro (and micro) trends in drinks and beyond.
The idea of social occasions not revolving around alcohol is becoming embedded in millennial culture – think of the Redemption Bar brand and early morning, sober rave movement Morning Glory (revellers meet before dawn, dance while the sun comes up, and are at their desks by 9am).
As well as looking at the younger millennial crowd, however, the growing aging population will drive much innovation in years to come. Drinks with specific health or functional benefits and special proteins for an older crowd are already out there, albeit in a very low key way.
Tastes are developing too, as we move on from the sweet wines and cocktails popular now, to more bitter and savoury flavours.
The keen eyed will also be keeping a watch out for “new” ingredients, such as Choline, raw birch water and magnesium; as well as aerated dairy drinks, draught cocktails and chilled – not iced – coffee.
See you in 2020.