Can Do!

Brain Twist Inc. has launched what it terms is a revolutionary new product: Defense Vitamin & Mineral Supplement. The vitamin- and mineral-enhanced, immune-boosting beverage may be more notable for its package, however.

Independent research scientist Dr. Stewart Gibson notes, “Scientific studies have clearly demonstrated that vitamins are not stable in normal beverage products and that the longer they stay in contact with liquid, the weaker they become. Such sensitive substances begin to degrade and lose potency almost immediately when mixed with the liquid beverage at the time of production. In addition, shelflife and exposure to light promote further loss of their potency."

FreshCan is a patented delivery system specifically designed to contain an air- and water-tight plastic container called the FreshCan Wedge. The system stores the blend of vitamins and minerals in its protected environment until activated by the consumer. The vitamins, therefore, are not dissolved in the beverage until the tab is pulled, which activates the FreshCan Wedge.

In the Spirit

With beer sales on the sluggish side, beer makers are looking to attract consumers whose tastes seem to have shifted to cocktails and wine. Anheuser-Busch is forming a wholly owned spirits subsidiary, Long Tail Libations, to address the trend.

The subsidiary is testing a two-part liqueur product in four U.S. markets. Jekyll & Hyde can be found in Orlando, Fla.; Columbia, Mo.; Denver; and Las Vegas.

The product is comprised of two liqueur bottles: Jekyll, a scarlet red, sweet spirit that tastes of wild berries, and Hyde, an herbal-tasting, black spirit that floats on top of the red-colored Jekyll. While the two can be served separately, they are meant to be together. The move would appear a first step into Anheuser-Busch's efforts to dominate alcoholic beverages as a whole.

While beer sales are faltering, the company is not abandoning development efforts there, however. Two new, “one-of-a-kind” brews have joined the company's line for the holidays: Celebrate by Michelob and Brew Masters' Private Reserve by Budweiser. Celebrate is described as a sipping beer, while Private Reserve is “exceptionally rich.”

Starbucks Expands Liqueur Presence

In February, Starbucks joined with Jim Beam Brands Co., a unit of Fortune Brands, to launch Starbucks Coffee Liqueur, which has grown to become the number-one selling new spirits product year-to-date (through August) in overall dollar sales, according to Nielsen numbers. In fact, those statistics find the product number three in the super-premium cordials category, with a market share of 11%. The venture was so successful that the two are collaborating again.

Starbucks Cream Liqueur is described as an “artful blend of cream, premium spirits and a hint of Starbucks coffee.” To be “enjoyed over ice, in coffee or as the signature ingredient in a favorite cocktail,” it will be found in licensed establishments such as restaurants, bars and retail outlets selling premium distilled spirits. A 750ml bottle is expected to retail for roughly $22.99, and it also will be available in 1L and 50ml sizes but will not be available in Starbucks stores.

Quite an Experience!

A new chocolate range in the U.K. at first glance would seem much like any of a number of other new such products hitting store shelves. The luxurious Swiss chocolate bars are made using organic and Fair Trade-certified cocoa beans; however, Orgasmic Chocolates (from the company of the same name) do promise a little something extra.

The bars include a “subtle” blend of Chinese herbs to produce a mellowing effect, promote a feeling of euphoria and heighten the sensory experience of eating chocolate. What herbs are included, and why? Cinnamon bark is to “warm the lower extremities.” Sage root invigorates blood circulation. Longan fruit reduces stress and anxiety, while radix ginseng increases stamina and recovery.

Four flavors of the bars will be available: smooth dark, creamy milk, dark with orange and milk with almond. Each dark chocolate bar has a minimum of 74% cocoa solids, while the milk chocolate variety has a minimum of 45%.