TRADING UP There is huge potential to recruit new customers into kombucha with products that feature authentic recipes and quality ingredients.
Chilled offlocation ranging alongside ‘graband-go’ food options are an interesting way to drive trial by tapping into a key consumption occasion.” – Natasya Wright, MOJO Kombucha
he popularity of kombucha is showing no signs of abating, but consumers are becoming savvier, and their understanding of probiotics has increased.
According to Justin Nel, Lead Consultant, IRI, there is a growing awareness that a lot of the probiotics and thereby the benefits of kombucha are killed in the stomach acid before reaching the gut, which is making shoppers rethink their preferred brands. “Looking at brand performance there is a movement towards kombucha products that provide the greatest chance for the probiotics to reach drinkers’ intestines and colon, this targeted release or encased probiotics are available in Perkii and Nexba both in value growth of 130 per cent and 316 per cent respectively,” he says. The overall kombucha category is in value growth of four per cent for 2020 versus 2019 in the convenience channel, and it is these targeted release products that are driving the growth.
46 June/July 2021 | C&I | www.c-store.com.au
“Kombucha products offering targeted release or encased probiotics are driving this growth as consumers want to ensure the optimal efficacy and benefits. Meaning that the probiotics survive the stomach and make it to the gut,” says Nel. According to Matthew Blake, National Sales Director, Rok Kombucha, an opportunity for retailers would be to consider splitting kombucha into two categories in-store: mainstream and authentic. “Consumer awareness of the word kombucha has grown through marketing, however, we are continuing to see consumers become more educated regarding the difference in ingredients, process and benefits within the category,” he says. “The kombucha category could be split into two sub-categories, which include mainstream kombucha (soft drink like, ambient, no sugar and diluted kombucha), which is very competitive with some cheap price points in the market.