Using proprietary technology that took years to refine, Isaac Lavi created The Right Cup by integrating FDA-approved, food-grade aromatic flavors throughout brightly colored cups that also are infused with a mildly sweet taste.
“To understand how the cup works, you must understand that about 80% of flavor is actually smell, which is why when you have a stuffed nose it is nearly impossible to taste flavor,” Lavi said.
Based on this and his experience as leading expert in scent marketing and application, Lavi designed the cup so that drinkers’ noses are positioned over the opening – allowing them to fully breathe in the aroma while drinking, he said.
The cups also are color-coordinated with the aromas “to give your brain the whole picture” and reinforce the illusion that the plain water is a sweet drink, he said. So far, the company offers an orange-flavored orange cup, a mixed berry-flavored purple cup, an apple-flavored green cup and a yellow colored lemon-lime-flavored cup.
Lavi acknowledged the cups cannot fully replicate the flavor of freshly squeezed juice or soda, but they successfully create the illusion of a “more flavorful drink that is better than plain, boring water,” he said.
For support, he points to tests he conducted with kindergarteners who drank the water from the cups and asked for more “juice,” when their cups were empty.
“I get goosebumps when I retell how the children though the water was juice,” he said. “Because, you know, kids cannot lie. If they don’t like something, they just push it away with their hands.”
Tests on adults also support the cup “is not a gimmick, but an answer to a necessity,” Lavi said.
Fighting sugar with water
He explained that he created The Right Cup as an answer to the continued obesity problem in America, which he attributes in part to the vast amounts of sugar Americans consume daily. For example, he noted the average American drinks 42 gallons of sweetened beverages a year, and that many people do not realize that sugar is in many industrialized foods – even savory ones.
The 2015 Dietary Guideline recommendations suggest Americans reduce sugar consumption in part by drinking water when they are thirsty – but the problem for many Americans, including Lavi, is that water doesn’t taste good.
Hence, Lavi says, Americans need The Right Cup to help them overcome this hurdle and drink more water.
Consumers embrace The Right Cup
Based on the success of The Right Cup’s ongoing Indigogo campaign to fund production of the cups, many American’s agree with Lavi.
The campaign, which launched in mid-November, attracted more than 1,800 backers who invested more than double the company’s goal of $50,000 within two weeks.
The money will be used to “perfect” the aroma of the cups, as well as potentially create more flavors, Lavi said. It also will cover the costs of tooling and production of the actual cups.
The company’s goal is to ship the finished product to backers in April 2016 and be on store shelves shortly after that.