Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD) revealed that the latest energy drink launches aren't getting any healthier. The popular beverage market continues to grow with sales increasing over 240% from 2004 to 2009. In the same timeframe, there has been a flood of new energy drinks to the market with new product launches up by over 110%.
Analyzing the ingredients in energy drinks launched between 2004 and 2008, Mintel GNPD found caffeine in nearly all energy drinks produced. Meanwhile, taurine, the other popular, yet controversial energy-boosting ingredient, was found in more than one in four (27%) energy drinks in 2004, but has slightly reduced to one in five (21%) in 2008.
Mintel found that suppliers are producing some new energy drinks that boast more health-focused claims, but they are in the minority. Energy drinks showing a 'low, no or reduced' calorie claim have increased from 6% to 11% between 2004 and 2008. Within the same timeframe, energy drinks featuring a 'low, no or reduced' sugar claim have held steady at one in seven new launches. In addition, better-for-you energizers like vitamin B6 and guarana have remained flat appearing in approximately 22% and 12% of new product launches, respectively.
In 2008, Ocean Spray introduced a line of Cranergy Energy Drinks billed as "naturally energizing." This line of drinks contains real fruit juice blended with natural energizers including five B Vitamins, Vitamin C and green tea extract. These new non-carbonated drinks are clinically shown to improve alertness and make people feel less tired. Bazza High-Energy Tea is another new energy-inducing beverage made from green tea and EGCG antioxidants and calls itself the "smarter high-energy alternative."