“There is significant opportunity for relaxation beverages," Traditional Medicinals manager says

By Elizabeth Crawford

- Last updated on GMT

Source: Traditional Medicinals
Source: Traditional Medicinals

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Traditional Medicinals sees untapped potential for growth in the emerging calming beverage category, which consumers are turning to for help counterbalancing the effects of popular energy drinks and everyday stress.

“There is significant opportunity for relaxation beverages, and particularly for tea, which is associated with helping people relax … due to the ritual experience of the hot beverage and steam,”​ said Carl Hendrickson, senior brand manager at Traditional Medicinals.

He pointed to research from the American Psychological Association that found approximately seven in 10 Americans report that they experience physical symptoms of stress and 80% who say their stress level has increased or stayed the same in the past year.

In addition, Hendrickson said, only 37% of Americans feel they are actually doing an excellent or very good job of managing their stress.

Recent research​ by The Hartman Group also highlights the extent of stress impacting consumers. The market research firm found one in two consumers it surveyed in May 2015 said they are actively preventing or treating anxiety and stress. This percent climbs to 57% when looking at only millennials, and 56% for Gen Xers. 

In addition, it found almost a third of consumers say that managing anxiety and stress is an area of concern that “urgently”​ needs to improve.

Stress Ease Cinnamon launched

Seeking to seize this market opportunity and hoping to help more Americans cope with their mounting stress, Hendrickson said Traditional Medicinals recently expanded its line of relaxation teas, sold as supplements, with the launch of Stress Ease Cinnamon.

The new tea differs from existing teas in Traditional Medicinals’ relaxation line and other calming teas sold by competitors because it uses skullcap as the active ingredient.

“Skullcap is underappreciated in the US right now,”​ Hendrickson said. “The name can sound scary, but actually it is very gentle and an effective herb for easing tension.”

The company sources the herb tea from the Pacific Northwest and only uses organic, non-GMO and pharmacopoeial grade skullcap, he added.

“Using pharmacopoeial grade her is really important to Traditional Medicinals overall because it essentially assures the herbs are top grade and the right quantity for the intended effect,”​ he said.

The skullcap is blended with cinnamon and licorice for a unique flavor that also sets the finished product apart from competitors in the relaxation space, Hendrickson said.

In addition, the cinnamon lends itself well to the current season – helping to evoke fall and winter flavors that consumers currently want.

Finally, Stress Ease Cinnamon is differentiated from competing products because consumers can drink it all day – unlike some blends and herbs that are better suited for before bed, Hendrickson said.

For example, he compared the blend to Traditional Medicinals’ other relaxation teas Nighty Night and Nighty Night Valerian, which include chamomile, and are designed to help induce sleep.

Both are similarly formulated with passionflower and chamomile, but Nighty Night Valerian also includes valerian root for added relaxation benefits.

The final stock keeping unit in the relaxation line is Cup of Calm, which also can be sipped all day, and blends passionflower, chamomile, lavender and catnip. 

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