Drinks companies cut sugar by seven per cent

Australia’s largest beverage companies have marked a major milestone by announcing a 7 per cent reduction in sugar in the first progress report on the beverage industry’s flagship initiative.

The signatories to the pledge, Asahi Lifestyle Beverages, Coca-Cola Amatil, Coca-Cola Australia and PepsiCo Australia, have contributed to the reduction in sugar across their portfolios, and more drinks companies are expected to join in the future.

In June 2018, with the support of the Minister for Health, the Hon Greg Hunt MP, Australia’s non-alcoholic beverage industry committed to reduce sugar across the industry by 20 per cent by 2025.

KPMG has provided the first report on the industry’s progress towards the sugar reduction goal and today this has been shared with the Australian Government.

Geoff Parker, CEO, Australian Beverages Council, said, “This report is a further sign that the industry is serious about reducing sugar in beverages while continuing to offer greater choice of low-sugar drinks and many without any sugar at all.”

“The industry is achieving its intended sugar reduction targets and is already more than one third of the way towards reducing sugar by 20 per cent by 2025, but there’s still a lot of work ahead of us,” he said.

The Australian Government supports the non-alcoholic beverage industry’s progress towards a 20 per cent reduction in sugar by 2025 with Minister Hunt congratulating the industry on its progress in an announcement at Parliament House today.

 

“The Morrison Government supports pragmatic and appropriate action to tackle obesity, particularly through initiatives that support Australians to live healthier lives,” said Minister Hunt.

 

“The partnership between the industry and the Morrison Government is a clear sign that collaborative solutions are available to tackle the complex issue of obesity by encouraging healthy diets.”

 

The Australian Beverages Council will continue to consult widely with a range of health, industry, supplier and government stakeholders to increase understanding of the commitment.

 

Mr Parker said, “The non-alcoholic beverage industry invites other sectors to join the Australian Beverages Council in reducing sugar while continuing to support choice and understanding of healthy lifestyles,” added Mr Parker.

 

Today’s report, demonstrates the industry’s long-term commitment to reduce sugar by 20 per cent by 2025, complements a national obesity strategy, encourages all Australians to live healthier lives and reflects our contribution to combat obesity.

 

Food and Hotel Malaysia 2019 to showcase latest food developments

The 15th Malaysian International Exhibition of Food, Drinks, Hotel, Restaurant & Foodservice Equipment, Supplies, Services and Related Technology is all set to take place from 24 to 27 September.

Also known as Food and Hotel Malaysia 2019 (FHM 2019), the event, which aims to catalyse the development of the food and hospitality industries in Malaysia, will cover 22,000 square metres of space at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre with 1500 participating brands / companies from 50 countries and 10 Country/National Pavilions. The four-day mega event is expected to draw more 28,000 trade visitors related to the food and hospitality industries from around the world, cementing the country’s position as a food and beverage hub of international repute.

Packed with conference programmes, technical seminars, educational talks, cooking demonstrations and displays of various types and ranges of produce and services FHM 2019 promises to be bigger and better, compared to preceding instalments of the show.  The trade event will leverage on key tech-driven strategies, with a keen realisation that strategic acquisitions are essential to ensure that this competitive marketplace remains current.

Participants can look forward to a myriad of opportunities for growing food and hospitality businesses while enabling industry players to stay on top of changing customer needs such as keeping in touch with the next generation of food production and understanding the ever demanding preferences of millennial consumers.

“Every edition we promise a bigger and better showcase than the one before and FHM 2019 is certainly gearing up to be quite unlike any other instalments in this series which resulted in a considerable take-up of additional hall space compared to previous shows,” said Mr Gerard Leeuwenburgh, Country GM of Informa Markets Malaysia on behalf of the organisers.

“An ideal avenue for companies targeting the Malaysian market, this is the only platform that offers participants direct access to crucial buyers from the hotel, restaurant and foodservice industries, bringing them the tools to sustain and expand their businesses. Our track record certainly speaks for itself and I am pleased to say that FHM 2019 is expected to see transactions taking place over the three days estimated to be between RM1.8 billion to RM2.2 billion – more than any other instalment in this series,” he added.

Among the new features of FHM 2019 are an Agriculture Pavilion and the highly anticipated Robotic Food Zone, alluding to the adaption of new technologies which have the demonstrated ability of increasing productivity and efficiency levels in the industry.

As in previous shows, FHM 2019 will once again be held alongside Culinaire Malaysia, where the crème-de-la-crème of Malaysia’s top chefs will compete in the “Malaysian Battle of the Chefs”. Culinaire Malaysia features over 1,500 entries and an assemblage of more than 1,000 culinary professionals, showcasing a stunning display of skills and talents in various disciplines and categories.

Also being held concurrently with FHM 2019 are the high profile In4Tec Food Innovation Conferences, which will include a plethora of conferences, among them the Food Innovation Conference 2019, Persidangan Inovasi Makanan Tempatan 2019, China-Malaysia Agri Food, Visit Malaysia 2020 & Beyond Conference, Malaysian Farm to Fork & Durian Conference, Persidangan Pengusaha Makanan 2019, Wilayah Persekutuan, Food Truck Malaysia 2019 and the Food and Beverage Entrepreneurship Skills Training. The In4Tec Food Innovation Conferences are also supported by Ministry of Agriculture and Agro-based and Ministry of Federal Territories.

Other highlights which participants can look forward to at FHM 2019 are the B2B business matching sessions, a VIP Buyers hosted programme for top buyers across the ASEAN-region and live cooking demonstrations by celebrity chefs which leverages on the FHM tradition of collaborating with world-renowned chefs at previous shows.

“With its multifaceted and all-encompassing character, there will certainly be something for anyone and everyone related to the food, beverage and hospitality industries, making FHM 2019 a truly unique event in itself that is definitely not to be missed,” said Mr. Leeuwenburgh.

FHM 2019 also comes at an opportune time as the country gears up for Visit Malaysia Year 2020. In 2020 Malaysia expects to see 30 million tourist arrivals, who will spend an estimated RM100 billion. FHM 2019 therefore certainly accelerates Malaysia’s preparedness to meet these demands while promoting entrepreneurship at every level in an inclusive manner,” said Mr Leeuwenburgh.

Organised by Informa Markets, Malaysia FHM 2019 is endorsed by the Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) and is supported by the Ministry of International Trade and Industry, Ministry of Tourism and Culture Malaysia (MOTAC), Malaysia Convention & Exhibition Bureau (MyCEB), Malaysian Association of Hotels (MAH), and The Malaysian Food & Beverage Executives Association (MFBEA).

Beverage processing equipment market is expected to reach $27.01 billion by 2026

According to Trends Market Research, the Global Beverage Processing Equipment is accounted for $16.26 billion in 2017 and is expected to reach $27.01 billion by 2026 growing at a CAGR of 5.8 per cent during the forecast period.

Increasing inclination of consumers toward health and wellness, increased consumption of alcohol, rising need for pasteurized milk to combat raw milk outbreaks, continuous up gradation in the equipment and machinery are the key driving factors for the market growth. However, increasing costs of power & energy is restraining the market growth.

Beverages processing equipment are used for processing and production of beverages synthesized from various sources and formulations to prepare a range of products such as fruit juices, milk products, aerated drinks, alcoholic liquor and processed water. Beverages processing equipment are generally designed and manufactured according to specifications required to process the beverages type. Beverages processing equipment are regulated by FDA and other similar regulations.

Beverages processing equipment manufacturers have to meet stringent regulations implemented by FDA and similar regulatory body owing to health and safety concerns. Further, consumer spending on beverages such as juice, soft drink, bottled water, tea, coffee, beer, wines etc. is continuously increasing primarily driven by increasing disposable income and changing eating habits.

Based on beverage type covered, dairy segment is projected to record the highest market share during the forecast period. The rise in the consumption of dairy beverages has also led to an increase in the demand for processing equipment across regions. By geography, Asia Pacific region is driven by the growing demand for alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages such as soft drinks, beer, and flavoured milk. The increasing demand for beverages is further driving the growth of the processing industry market over the forecast period.

Some of the key players profiled in the Beverage Processing Equipment include Alfa Laval, Anderson Engineering, Bevcorp Beverage Equipment, Bucher Industries AG, Columbit, GEA Group, Gerhard Unger, JBT Corporation, KHS GmbH, Krones Group, Mueller Co, Pentair plc, Praj Industries Ltd, SPX Flow Inc and Tetra Pak.

Types covered:
• Filling and Packaging Equipment
• Raw Material Processing Equipment

Beverages types covered:
• Alcoholic Beverages
• Processed Water
• Dairy Based Beverages
• Non-Alcoholic Beverages

Equipment types covered:
• Carbonation Equipment
• Brewery Equipment
• Filtration Equipment
• Sugar Dissolvers
• Blenders & Mixers
• Heat Exchangers
• Other Equipment

Applications covered:
• Fruits & Vegetables
• Dairy
• Beverage

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A story about dairy processing plants, fat balls and blocked sewers

Positive prospects of flavoured drinks sector through 2028

A report titled ‘Flavor Carriers Market: Global Industry Analysis 2013–2017 and Forecast 2018–2028’, suggests that the flavor carriers market reached nearly $197 billion in 2018 in terms of value, and is forecasted to reach $2.63 billion by the end of 2028. The global flavor carriers market is expected to grow at the CAGR of 3.0 per cent in terms of value from the estimated year (2018) to the forecast year (2028).

Convenience food products and dairy industry projected to substantially boost the growth of the flavor carriers market
Convenience food products are the prominent consumed foodstuffs in the food industry. These include cheese, butter, snack products, packaged food, and others. These are the daily need products which are available as ready to eat products without further preparation which contain flavor carriers as ingredients to enhance the taste, texture, color and durability of products.

Changing food habits and busy lifestyle are the reason which are driving the market of convenience food products. These products have increasing demand on every day basis, it is forecasted that convenience food market have high growth in upcoming years which is surging the market of flavor carriers.

With numerous flavor emulsion types, the flavor carriers market is expected to gain market share steadily
Health conscious consumers demand healthy and natural products, which generally are generally recognized as safe by food regulatory authority. To enhance the taste and durability of healthy and natural food products, manufacturers are using flavor emulsion in these products, which is creating huge market opportunities for the flavor carriers market. Numerous flavor emulsions are available in the flavor carriers market and serve industries such as bakery, fruit, and alcoholic as well as non-alcoholic beverages industry.

The demand for alcoholic beverages is rising worldwide and in the alcoholic beverages sector, flavor carriers are at an initial phase of market growth. Companies are focusing on future technological advancement & innovations in this industry to use flavors in different products. Non-alcoholic fruit and flavored beverages including carbonated beverages, soft drinks, energy drinks, and fruit juices demand the highest number of flavors, fruit flavors, and flavor emulsions. This leads to an increase in demand for flavor carriers.

The flavor emulsion segment is estimated to hold a 74.6 per cent market share by value in the flavor carriers market by the end of 2018, and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 2.7 per cent in terms of value from the estimated year (2018) to the forecast year (2028).

Europe and Asia Pacific are prominent regions for the flavor carriers market
Europe and Asia Pacific regions are expected to hold promising opportunities in terms of value increase and reach $157 Mn and $326 Mn with CAGR of 2.2 per  cent and 4.2 per cent respectively by the year 2028. European countries are a, who always set new trends in the food and beverages market. Hence, the region is expected to have high demand for flavor carriers.

India and China are highly populated countries. The increasing per capita income and spending power of consumers is driving the market for convenience and packaged food and ready to drink beverages in this region, which is further fueling the flavor carriers market.

Research helps towards creating more stable brewing processes

New findings from University of Adelaide researchers, could help provide more stable brewing processes or new malts for craft brewers.

The researchers discovered a link between one of the key enzymes involved in malt production for brewing and a specific tissue layer within the barley grain.

The most important malting enzymes come from a layer of tissue in the barley grain called the aleurone, a health-promoting tissue full of minerals, antioxidants and dietary fibre.

The research showed that the more aleurone present in the barley grain, the more enzyme activity the grain produced.

READ: Aussie blockchain startup BlockGrain to pilot barley-to-beer tracking

Barley is the second most important cereal crop for South Australia and contributes over $2.5 billion to the national economy. This is largely due to its use in beverage production.

University of Adelaide school of agriculture, food and wine associate professor and project leader, Matthew Tucker, said barley grains had impressive features ideal for creating the malt required by the brewing industry.

“During the malting process, complex sugars within the barley grain are broken down by enzymes to produce free sugars, which are then used by yeast for fermentation. The levels of these enzymes, how they function and where they are synthesised within the barley grain are therefore of significant interest for the brewing industry,” he said.

“Until now, it was not known that this key ingredient in the beer brewing process was influenced by the amount of aleurone within the grain, or that the aleurone was potentially a storage site for the enzyme,” said Tucker.

The researchers examined the aleurone in a range of barley cultivars used by growers and breeding programs in Australia and found remarkable variation in the aleurone layer between varieties.

Tucker said breeders and geneticists could make use of this natural variation to select for barley varieties with different amounts of aleurone and different malting characteristics.

“This will be of potential interest to large brewers who depend on stable and predictable production of malt, and also the craft brewers that seek different malts to produce beer with varying characteristics.”

PhD student Matthew Aubert used the variation to examine levels of enzymes involved in malt production.

He discovered that barley grains possessing more aleurone had noticeably more activity in one of the key enzymes that breaks down starch and determines malt quality of barley, an enzyme called free beta-amylase.

Aubert said grains with more aleurone could have an advantage that allowed them to break down complex sugars faster or more thoroughly than grains with less aleurone.

The researchers are now trying to find the genes that explain this natural variation.

Aubert’s research was supported by the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence in plant cell walls and the Grains Research and Development Corporation.

New twist on natural fruit drinks

New Zealand’s Pete’s Natural has added two new brewed fruit drinks to its range and given itself a fresh look.

The company has been brewing natural fruit drinks using New Zealand grown fruit instead of imported concentrates since 2010. The two new flavours on offer are a low sugar Ginger Beer and Lemon Chilli.

Using only premium, fair trade and organic ingredients, Pete’s Natural Lemonade was followed by Currant Crush, Orange Berry Fusion and Lime-o-nade in 2013, all containing no concentrates and nothing artificial.

From mid-March, consumers will be able to recognise all the beverages by their new labels, and crack open a bottle of new honey-sweetened Ginger Beer and Lemon Chilli with a real pepper in each bottle.

According to the company, the range offers a healthier alternative to most bottled beverages, which contain 10-11gr or more sugar, with each flavour around 6gr/100ml and the Ginger Beer at a super low 3.7 gr/100ml.

Future Memoirs Of A Root Beer

Product Name: Future Memoirs Of A Root Beer

Product Manufacturer: East 9th Brewing

Launch date: April 2016

Ingredients: Preservative (202,220) added for freshness

Shelf Life: 12 Months

Packaging: 330mL Bottles/4x4x330ML (16) Case

Product Manager: Benjamin Cairns

Country of origin: Australia

Brand Website:  https://www.e9thbrewing.com

Describe the product: Future Memoirs Of A Root Beer sets the scene of a retrospective window into the future with a glimpse of all the outrageous, awesome things you’ve already done in your upcoming destiny. With a signature blend of flavours including Sassafras, Vanilla, Cinnamon and Ginger, this Alcoholic Root Beer delivers an experience like no other. Served over ice (at 4.0%ABV), Future Memoirs Of A Root Beer provides and interesting and sessionable alternative to traditional beers.
 

Contact Email: bcairns@e9thbrewing.com

Coca-Cola shakes up the water category with new releases

Coca-Cola South Pacific has announced the launch of two new dynamic products, which are aimed at providing consumers with new and enhanced choices in the water category. 

Powerade Sports Drops and Pump Drops have both launched into market, designed to evolve the burgeoning water segment and tap into significant growth opportunities.

Powerade Sports Drops is a customised offering providing 'on the go hydration' and is primarily targeted at unlocking the significant market opportunity around the 'on the go' exercise occasion. The target audience for the product is focused on active males across a broad age range.

Available in Mountain Blast and Berry Ice flavours, Powerade Sports Drops powers water by enhancing hydration with the addition of electrolytes to replace those lost through sweat. As part of the overall strategy for the master Powerade brand, marketing activity will reinforce the consumption occasions to consumers at point-of-purchase, backed up by a range of striking point-of-sale merchandising solutions.

Pump Drops is a flavoured drops offering designed to deliver added value to the bottled water category by driving flavour innovation. It is the first water enhancer to launch in Australia under an existing water brand, as opposed to standalone offerings or new brands. 

The product is targeted at 18-34 year olds who are conscious about their health, as well as those seeking more variety from their water consumption. Pump Drops adds a sugar free flavour blast to water and is available in three different flavours: Strawberry Kiwi, Mixed Berry and Pineapple Coconut.

The launch comes off the back of the success of the launch of liquid concentrate water enhancers in the US, which resulted in driving category volume growth and a 15 per cent increase in the flavoured water segment. In-store point-of-sale activity will be a key driver of the product marketing push as the Pump brand seeks to drive further growth.

Tracey Evans, Hydration Marketing Manager, Coca-Cola South Pacific, said: "The launch of our new Drops products further extends our commitment to present more choice when it comes to the beverages we offer, providing more innovative options to meet the consumer demand of our respective target audiences.  We see growth potential for both products similar to what we have already seen in the US, making this a very exciting time for water in the Australian market."

Sassy Cider – L’inimitable

Product Name: Sassy Cider – L’inimitable

Product Manufacturer: Maison Sassy

Launch date: Late Dec '15- Early Jan '16

Ingredients: 22 Varieties of Apple Juice (Fermented), Sulphites

Shelf Life: 18 months

Packaging: 330mL & 750mL glass bottles

Product Manager: Noble Spirits

Country of origin: France

Brand Website: https://www.maison-sassy.com/

Describe the product: L’inimitable shows a perfect balance between the dry of a dry cider and the fruit of a semi dried cider. Characterised by an aromatic complexity and delicacy, this cider, served at 8°, is a perfect match for an aperitif or to go with meat, cheese (Camembert, Pont l’Evêque) or an apple dessert.

Contact Email: info@noblespirits.com.au

Noble Spirits bring Sassy Ciders to Australia

Noble Spirits have included a new premium brand within their portfolio – Sassy Ciders.

Sassy Cider is produced in the heart of Normandy in the north of France from orchards located near the exquisite Château de Sassy. 

These high quality handcrafted ciders, are made with no added colourings, no additives and no nasties, with recipes passed down from previous generations at the Château. Each of their products are created from a meticulous hand-picked selection of apples and pears from hundred year old trees.

Noble Spirits will be bringing the full range of this brand for Australian consumers. 

This includes the Apple Cider – ‘L’Inimitable’, the Pear Cider – ‘Le Vertueux, and a Rosé Cider – ‘La Sulfuruese’.

When climate change hits our food supply, city foodbowls could come to the rescue

Australians may need to get used to coping with more disruptions to their food supply and rising food prices in a warming climate.

But the food produced near our cities – our “city foodbowls” – could play a vital role in increasing the resilience of our food supply, as discussed in a new briefing from our Foodprint Melbourne project.

The urban fringes of Australia’s major cities are some of the most productive agricultural regions in Australia. They also have access to valuable urban waste streams to support food production, including recycled water from city water treatment plants and desalination plants.

Nonetheless, Australia’s city foodbowls are at risk of urban development, and the opportunity to develop them as climate resilient foodbowls could be lost unless their value is recognised in metropolitan planning policy.

Climate shock

The Queensland floods of 2010-11 showed how a sudden extreme weather event could disrupt a city’s food supply. Major transport routes to Brisbane and other cities were cut off and supermarkets began to run short of some food.

And the Millennium Drought demonstrated the impact that drought could have on food prices, when fruit prices in Australia increased 43% between 2005 and 2007, and vegetable prices by around 33%.

Climate change is expected to reduce the capacity for food production across southern Australia due to water scarcity, increasing temperatures and more frequent extreme weather events.

We don’t know exactly how climate change will affect food production, but it is likely that Australia’s major regional foodbowl, the Murray-Darling Basin, will see significant impacts in a severe drying scenario. Wheat and dairy production are predicted to decrease due to climate change. Crops such as fruit and vegetables are likely to be particularly affected.

As the impacts of climate change are felt in Australia’s regional foodbowls, urban and urban fringe (or “peri-urban”) areas of food production around Australian capital cities could become more important sources of fresh foods. Cities have access to resources that are in increasingly short supply, such as water, fertile land and organic waste streams that can be composted to provide fertilisers.

Australia’s city foodbowls

These urban fringes are not widely-recognised as “foodbowls”, but historically they have been an important source of food. Like many world cities, they were typically founded in fertile areas with good access to water. This fed their growing populations.

As cities sprawl, market gardens have been pushed further out and city foodbowls have shrunk, but many are still highly productive. Sydney’s foodbowl produces at least 20% of New South Wales’ total vegetable production, for instance, including the majority of the state’s total production of cabbage, spring onions, shallots and mushrooms.

Melbourne’s foodbowl produces a wide variety of foods, including fresh vegetables, fruit, eggs and meat. It currently has the capacity to meet up to 41% of the food needs of city’s population.

 

Crops such as lettuce are commonly grown on the urban fringes of cities thanks to close access to markets and labour Rachel Carey

 

Some areas of Melbourne’s foodbowl have access to recycled water, such as Werribee to the city’s west and the proposed Bunyip Food Belt to the south-east. The Werribee Irrigation District, next to Melbourne’s Western Treatment Plant, grows around 10% of the vegetables produced in Victoria, including the majority of the state’s broccoli and cauliflower.

Towards the end of the Millennium Drought, vegetable production in this region became dependent on recycled water from the water treatment plant as river levels fell.

But areas such as Werribee are under threat from urban development.

Resilient food supply

The importance of city foodbowls for resilient and sustainable food systems has been recognised internationally.

Cities such as Melbourne and Sydney are fed from a variety of sources – regional, national and global – as well as local. All are important, but urban and urban fringe food production has the potential to increase the resilience of a city’s food supply in a number of ways. These include reducing the dependence of city populations on distant sources of food, and maximising the use of limited natural resources.

If Australia’s capital cities are able to accommodate growing populations in a way that contains urban sprawl and retains their capacity for food production, city foodbowls could contribute to a food supply more resilient from climate change.

For this to happen, city planning strategies need to recognise the significance of city foodbowls for sustainable and resilient city food systems.

The Conversation

Rachel Carey, Research Fellow, Deakin University; Jennifer Sheridan, Researcher in sustainable food systems, University of Melbourne, and Kirsten Larsen, Manager, Food Systems Research and Partnerships, University of Melbourne

This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

Coca-Cola celebrates 100 years of the iconic contour bottle

Coca-Cola is today celebrating the 100th birthday of the iconic Contour bottle, a design that has cemented itself as a global pop culture icon and loved by millions around the world.

First patented in 1915, the Coca-Cola bottle was created with unmistakable curves and a distinctive contour following a brief that called for “a design so distinctive that it could be recognised by touch alone and so unique that it could be identified when shattered on the ground.” Despite countless attempts from imitators, the Coca-Cola bottle has become an undisputed icon that has remained the same for 100 years, but has managed to remain relevant to generations around the world.

Throughout its 100 years, the Contour bottle has rubbed shoulders with the likes of Marilyn Munroe, Elvis Presley and Ray Charles, become a muse to artists and designers such as Andy Warhol, Norman Rockwell and Dolce & Gabbana, made its way onto the silver screen in film classics such as Strictly Ballroom (1992) and The Coca-Cola Kid (1985), and sung with the legend that is John Farnham with his major hit Age of Reason featuring in the 1988 Coca-Cola TVC.

Coca-Cola South Pacific Group Marketing Manager, Dianne Everett, says: “Today is a true milestone birthday for Coca-Cola. One hundred years ago, a design was created that would go on to become a global icon. It’s a truly special thing to think that although Coca-Cola as a brand has changed and reinvented itself over the  years, this design  icon  has  remained  the  same.  Here in Australia, we’re delighted to finally mark the actual 100th birthday of the Contour bottle after a wonderful year of exciting celebrations.”

The 100th birthday also marks the end of a yearlong major Australian campaign titled ‘Pop Art’, which drew from globally developed creative of the Contour bottle to visually transform the brand giving it a new modern look. The Contour Pop Art campaign also marked the first time the full trademark appeared together to include the newest addition, Coke Life.

 

CCA launches new Sprite campaign

Coca-Cola South Pacific has launched the next phase of Sprite's 'Cut Through The Heat' brand campaign, dedicated to inspiring and empowering Aussies to deal with life's awkward moments. 

The campaign kicks will include the return of the brand's distinguished ambassador, Sprite Saver, who will amplify Sprite's 'cut through' message through a number of 'refreshing' environments.

There will be a heavy focus on social media, designed to build an active and engaged community of Sprite lovers and encourage younger consumers to build a connection and affinity with the brand. 

The company said that content will be geared towards sparking dialogue around cutting through heated moments, positioning Sprite as a tool to cut through them and demonstrating how it can give consumers the confidence to keep their cool.

Donna Mulholland, Group Marketing Manager, Coca-Cola South Pacific said: "We're looking to build brand equity and increase engagement amongst consumers by capturing their interest through a series of fun and engaging executions that will be rolled out in market in the coming months. Our refreshment message also remains at the heart of the campaign as we continue to educate consumers about the product benefits."

Nestlé opens new beverages factory and noodle line in Malaysia

Nestlé has invested approximately $AUD122 million in a new beverages factory and noodle line in Malaysia. Both facilities are located in Nestlé’s largest manufacturing site in the country, in the city of Shah Alam, which employs close to half of Nestlé Malaysia’s workforce.

The new factory, which cost $AUD 93 million, is Nestlé’s eighth in Malaysia. It will produce Ready-To-Drink products, including Milo, Nescafé and Nestlé Omega Plus, for which Nestlé is seeing rising demand. 

Building on Maggi noodle’s growing popularity in the country, where 1.7 million single packs of the product are sold every day, 

Nestlé has also invested around $AUD 30 million in a new high-capacity noodle line to produce Maggi Curry Noodles, a favourite among Malaysian consumers. 

Over the past two years, Nestlé has invested more than $AUD192 million as part of its long-term growth strategy in Malaysia.

Coconut drink blamed for boy’s death

A Sydney-base importer of coconut milk, Narkena Pty Ltd has pleaded guilty to three labelling and packaging charges in a sentence hearing this week after a 10-year old boy died from an anaphylactic shock.

The NSW Food Authority prosecuted the importer who recalled the Greentime Natural Coconut Drink in 2013, with Narkena business manager Perry Wu confirming a lack of specific testing.
It found that the drink was falsely labelled and sold in a manner that contravened the Food Standards Code and could be charged $10,000 on each account.

NSW president of Allergy & Anaphylaxis Australia, Maria Said says she was dismayed that it had taken two years for similar products to be investigated, even after the coconut milk blamed for the boy’s death was found to contain cow’s milk.

Passionfruit Pink Lady – Cheeky Rascal Cider

Product Name: Passionfruit Pink Lady
Product Manufacturer: Rebello
Launch date (must be in the last 3 months to be eligible): new product labelling in last few months
Ingredients (as listed on the packaging): Pink Lady Apple Juice (Fermented), Fermented Passion Fruit
Cane sugar, Sulphites
Shelf Life: 18 months
Packaging: 500mL amber bottles in 15 bottles per case
Country of origin: Australia
Brand Website: https://www.rebellowines.com.au
Describe the product: Made with Victorian grown pink lady apples and real passionfruit, Passionfruit Pink Lady was created as a limited edition range to the Cheeky Rascal Cider family on the back of Cheeky Rascal’s loyal followers who it canvassed asking them to identify fruits they’d like to see blended with cider.

What Might Be the Impact of an Australian Soda Tax?

What Might Be the Impact of an Australian Soda Tax?

By Howard Telford, Senior Industry Analyst with Euromonitor International

With the implementation of high profile sugar and soft drinks taxation in France in 2012, in Mexico in 2014 and Berkley, California in January of this year, the global debate concerning the purpose and efficacy of excise tax proposals on sugary beverages is inevitably moving in to other high per capita markets for carbonates.

Presently, the topic is on the agenda in Australia, a top 10 market for carbonates consumption in terms of per capita retail volume sold, and yet another country where obesity and other public health concerns are driving interest in added taxation as a potential policy solution. Fifteen years of volume and value sales data for carbonated drinks in the Australian market, published as part of Euromonitor’s non-alcoholic drinks research program, allow us to speculate on the potential impact of a soft drinks tax by considering the historic impact that price increases have had on Australian retail sales of carbonates, with a focus on cola.

COLA AS A CASE STUDY
As part of non-alcoholic drinks research published this January, Euromonitor International employed an inductive demand model to aid in five-year forecasting. The forecast model attempts to identify several measureable and statistically significant demand factors (including retail price) from historic data sets of the 80 markets researched. These factors are tested against historically available data for retail and on-trade beverage category sales, and then weighted to assist in building 2015-2019 country forecasts.

Australia-cola-sales.png

For Australia, the results demonstrate that a 1% increase in the retail selling price of regular, full flavour cola carbonates can be expected to yield just a 0.2% decrease in retail volume. Consequently, even a relatively substantial (and hypothetical) 7% increase in pricing in 2015 would yield only half a percentage point difference in expected declines: from a 6.5% forecasted reduction in off-trade regular, full-flavour cola volume for 2015, to a 7.0% reduction in 2015 under a soda tax scenario.

Discounting other factors, this finding suggests a weak relationship between price hikes and volume declines in Australian standard cola. However, this finding is simply based on observable data from the market and should not be oversimplified. 

In constant 2014 Australian dollars, retail unit prices for cola carbonates (including regular and low calorie cola alternatives) have fallen consistently over the review period – by 17% in total over 2000-14. There is greater uncertainty over the impact of a substantial soda tax in Australia, because there is simply no precedent for a substantial price shock in the Australian retail market. Furthermore, the introduction of such taxation would necessarily be accompanied by a high profile health and public policy debate in the media that may further impact consumer attitudes and behaviours towards the cola and wider carbonates category for reasons other than simple price.

WOULD THERE BE A PUBLIC HEALTH BENEFIT TO A SODA TAX?
The policy argument for excise taxation on carbonates – or similar Pigovian taxation on other products, including alcohol and tobacco – is that taxes ultimately raise prices to the consumer, driving down overall consumption of unhealthy products. The low sensitivity of standard, regular cola retail volume consumption to changes in retail price in Australia and the relative importance of other demand drivers makes it difficult to draw hard conclusions about the immediate impact such a tax might have on consumption and health.

Additionally, as a developed soft drinks market, consumers in Australia have a wealth of diet, low-calorie, zero calorie, and other non-cola alternatives to replace regular cola carbonates in their diet. In fact, Australian low-calorie carbonates have gained considerably on regular cola over the review period. Crucially, for the first time in 2014, Euromonitor’s data suggests that low-calorie cola outsold regular cola carbonates in terms of retail volume in Australia.

We know that there have been substantial declines in standard, full flavour cola (down 22% in off-trade volume over 2000-2014) and wider carbonated beverages in Australia over the recent review period. Interestingly, these declines have taken place in an environment of flat or declining prices in real terms and have been accompanied by consumer migration to low calorie cola (and non-cola carbonate) alternatives. 

Recent volume declines, independent of observable category price increases, have had an impact on sugar consumption received from soft drinks, according to Euromonitor International’s Nutrition system. In 2011, Australians received an estimated 12.62g of sugar per capita, per diem from cola carbonate beverages. By 2014, this figure has fallen to 11.83g of sugar per capita, largely as the result of a 3% decline in cola carbonates retail volume over that same period. The amount of per capita, per diem sugar from cola carbonates is expected to fall to 10.28g by 2019, independent of excise tax legislation.

IS A SODA TAX NECESSARY?
It may be worth considering whether consumers in Australia – and indeed in many developed markets – are addressing well publicised concerns about the category by exiting cola for other alternatives, independent of price considerations and motivated instead by health or taste considerations.

There is a weak observable relationship in historic volume data between cola consumption and price in Australia. This is primarily because there is little precedent for substantial price increases in retail cola, supported by a strong consumer expectation for discounting that has kept the price environment in the category flat or declining. It may be the case that a substantial price shock could have a disruptive and unexpected impact on consumption. However, even in a low price, discount oriented environment for full flavour cola, volume sales have declined substantially as consumers migrate to alternative beverage categories, including low-calorie colas (led by the brands Pepsi Max and Coca-Cola Zero).

Cola consumption (regular and low-calorie) is expected to decline by 9% over 2015-19, with regular, full-flavour cola expected to decline by a staggering 25% in just five years, independent of any tax increase. Consumption of total carbonates is expected to decline by 5% in retail. 

While soda taxes will gather political and media attention as a response to public health issues across food and beverages, it is worth considering whether consumers are already responding to health concerns in their soft drinks, largely independent of price considerations. Regular standard cola carbonates in Australia have declined, to the benefit of low-calorie alternatives, with a positive impact on per capita, per diem sugar consumption.

Australia-Cola-forecasts.png

It is therefore worth wondering whether sugar and soda taxation proposals are seeking to address a health question to which the The chart above demonstrates this point clearly. In light blue, we have an industry demand model forecast estimate built only on core economic factors that influence consumer goods: population growth, average income growth, price and habit persistence (a lagged effect of growth in the previous year). If these factors alone were used to predict growth in Australian cola, a flat performance might be expected over the next five years. However, in dark blue, the actual published Passport forecast shows a CAGR of -5.4%, in stark contrast to the -0.6% CAGR expected by the industry demand model.

The consensus forecast is revised down by 4.8 percentage points to account for unmeasured factors outside the demand model, most prominently rapidly changing attitudes to health, sugar and lifestyles. These consumer-led factors are expected to be the driver behind declines in the Australian cola category. It is therefore worth wondering whether sugar and soda taxation proposals are seeking to address a health question to which the Australian consumer has already found an answer. consumer has already found an answer.

Coke-Cola reformulates Powerade for big market push

Coca-Cola South Pacific has announced the launch of Powerade ION4, the biggest reformulation of Powerade since 2006, seeking to capitalise on the accelerated growth of the sports drinks category over the last two years. 

The new formula is said to contain 95 per cent more electrolytes to help replace four of the electrolytes lost through sweat – sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium. 

The launch follows hot on the heels of Footy Finals weekend, fronted by NRL star performers Billy Slater, face of the launch TVC, and Greg Inglis, face of the out of home advertising. The campaign will continue through strategic associations with key sporting events in cricket and basketball, with further activity planned ahead of the Olympics in August 2016. 

Tracey Evans, Group Marketing Manager Hydration, said: "In the booming sports drink category what has become apparent is that innovation and exclusive partnerships are driving transactions. 

"Powerade ION4 is an evolution of the sports category, reinforcing product efficiency and sporting credentials through a new formulation containing 95 per cent more electrolytes that help replace four of the electrolytes lost in sweat. Following successful trials, where these claims drove a huge 61 per cent increase in purchase intent, we're looking forward to launching in market and driving growth in the category."   

Powerade ION4 is available nationally from most retailers in 600ml single serves and multi-packs in Mountain Blast, Berry Ice, Lemon Lime, Gold Rush and Blackcurrant flavours.

Coca-Cola says portion control is behind smaller bottles

Coca-Cola South Pacific has revealed the early success of its 390ml packages, which are now available fro the second time across the Coca-Cola trademark and flavours range. The packages ranging has been extensively broadened and now replaces the 450ml package in response to changing consumer trends.

The beverage maker said that the 390ml package- which was first introduced in 2009, provides “multiple benefits to both consumers and retailers including portion control and delivering greater options on-shelf.”

The smaller portion size is designed to meet with Coca-Cola's strategy to deliver the right pack for the right occasion, providing an appropriate mid-sized refreshment for consumers.

Early 390ml trials in Queensland demonstrated a strong transaction uplift with double digit increase in unit sales within 390ml stockists and an increase in net contribution. Retailers said they also saw growth of 600ml packages over the trial period. 

To promote the packaging, the 390ml variant will be supported by occasion-based messaging at point of purchase, promoting it as a 'grab and go' option. 

To differentiate the offerings, the 250ml variant will be positioned as a 'Quick Treat' while those who have an 'Extra Thirst' will be encouraged to consider the 600ml package, the company said in a statement.

Dianne Everett, Group Marketing Manager Coca-Cola Trademark, Coca-Cola South Pacific, said: "We have been delighted to see consumers embrace the new smaller packaging in our early trials. Consumer trends have continued to evolve in recent years and we have recognised this with our recent packaging changes. Our aim is to provide greater choice with our products to suit the lifestyles of today's consumers. "

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