The flavor company said the ready-to-drink (RTD) coffee products resulted from gaining consumer insights early on in the flavor concept stage of product development.
It claims that this approach helps speed up the development process for customers, which means bringing new trends to market quicker.
Emmanuel Laroche, vice president, marketing services and sensory consumer science North America, said: “The standard methods once used by the industry for ‘on time’ flavor developments are obsolete for today’s highly competitive food and beverage arena.
“At Symrise, we believe while many continue to accept yesterday’s idea of what constitutes ‘on time’ delivery, our new accelerated, ‘earlier-is-better’ flavor development approach is more efficient and provides our customers with a strong market advantage.”
Laroche told FoodNavigator-USA.com that the process takes about eight to ten weeks from the idea generation until protocept (product prototypes ready for demonstration) validation.
He added: “There are various approaches regarding fuzzy front end research to capture consumer feedback on flavors; some involved product evaluations, some focus only on concepts.
“At Symrise we engage consumers at both stages with qualitative and quantitative research.
“This offers a quick way to our customer to screen new ideas including flavor expert and consumer input as well as consumer validation.”
Its flavor team identified what consumers are looking for through Symrise’s Flavor Designers Club, an online proprietary panel of people passionate about food, or ‘foodies’.
The panelists who were coffee lovers said they saw coffee as an ‘old friend’; something that ‘gets me up in the morning’; ‘an extension of the dessert experience’ and ‘a ritual’.
Panelists who were not avid coffee drinkers reported that they were interested in RTD coffee infused with ‘good for you’ fruit tastes.
These findings led to prototypes named Barista Premium Coffee Coolers and Fruit ‘n Java, which blends healthy ingredients such as B-vitamins and ginseng with coffee flavor.
The fruit flavors are orange, pomegranate/raspberry, peach/mango and strawberry/blueberry.
Laroche said that through the combination of its flavor technology, flavor experts and creative consumers they are creating tastes for customers’ brands with an “accelerated flavor development process that will get them to market faster”.
A recent report from the research group Global Industry Analysts said the global market for non-alcoholic beverages will remain dominated by more perceivably healthy soft drink options, amidst a growing population concerned with well being in what they drink.
And it said demand is brewing for niche segments like ready-to-drink tea and coffee-based beverages, on the back of increasing global availability.