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FruitSmartTM has identified rising demand for fruit juice and botanical combinations as a major new trend in the healthy beverage space, and will highlight its capability to blend them at Natural Products Expo West (8th to 10th March 2023).

Usage occasions for fruit juice are changing, with consumers increasingly viewing it as a permissible indulgence, and looking for new experiences. They are also seeking out products with additional wellness benefits, a need that micronutrient-rich juices are able to meet, particularly if fortified with other healthy ingredients. Mintel has highlighted functional benefits as a possible key to growth in the juice and juice drinks market.1

Meanwhile, in an increasingly stressful world, consumers are turning to natural ingredients for self-care, with the global botanical-infused drinks market predicted to grow at a CAGR of 6.4% over the next ten years.2 By formulating with botanicals, juice manufacturers can meet multiple needs, offering benefits such as energy and stress reduction, as well as novel flavors.

Working with 31 fruits, FruitSmart is a leading producer of juice concentrates and Not From Concentrates. It also has access to a wide range of botanical extracts, vegetable powders and flavors through its sister companies, Shank’s and Silva International.

At Natural Products Expo West, the Washington State-based company will highlight its capabilities to blend juices with botanicals, as well as other ingredients. Beverage concepts on show at the company’s booth (#N1447) will include:

  • An immunity drink combining apple, raspberry, cherry and blueberry juices with turmeric, ginger, acai and vanilla extracts
  • A blend of apple and beetroot juice with red and black pepper
  • A raspberry smoothie with protein and fiber

Wayne Lutomski, President of FruitSmart, said: “The positioning of fruit juices has undergone a fascinating journey. They were once seen as the ultimate health product, before concerns about sugar content and ultra-processing removed a little shine from the halo. In the new phase of their evolution, we’re going to see more products that combine a novel experience with sought-after wellness benefits. Blending juices with botanicals is a great way to meet this need and FruitSmart is the ideal partner to help you do it. We have the expertise and the resources to combine juices with botanicals, juices with flavors, juices with vegetable powders, and juices with other juices.”

1Mintel ‘The Future of Juice and Juice Drinks: 2022’
2Fact.MR, 2023

FruitSmartTM showcased two novel fruit beverage concepts at SupplySide West in the US. Created from premium cold-pressed fruit-based ingredients, and blended with botanicals and macronutrients such as protein, they demonstrated how fruit juice is an excellent carrier for both taste and functionality.

Depending on the fruit used, juice can provide a wide range of important nutrients, including antioxidants and polyphenols. FruitSmart’s new beverage concepts illustrate how brands can leverage the natural benefits of high-quality fruit-based drinks as part of a healthy, balanced diet.

Visitors to FruitSmart’s booth at SupplySide West in Las Vegas were able to sample:

  • A raspberry protein and fiber drink blending red raspberry, apple, pear, and elderberry juice with pea protein and apple fiber. This creates a great-tasting product that provides satiety, immunity and gut-health benefits, alongside better blood glucose control and optimal fructose absorption in the small intestine.
  • A super-fruits beverage – made from dark sweet cherry, blueberry, raspberry, and elderberry juice, with extract of turmeric, ginger, acai and vanilla, it’s rich in both flavour and micronutrients, including antioxidants and polyphenols.

Wayne Lutomski, President of FruitSmart, said: “Our new fruit beverage concepts show how brands can develop exciting products that are a welcome addition to any healthy diet. Yes, it contains sugar, but look at the friends that fruit can bring to the party – polyphenols, antioxidants, vitamins A and C, folate, and essential minerals such as potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, and sodium. Fruit’s intrinsic health and wellness benefits can be further enhanced by adding other nutrients, such as fiber, protein, and botanicals. And of course it delivers amazing taste!”

About FruitSmartTM
FruitSmart specialises in premium, high-quality, fruit-based juices and ingredients. With roots in the food processing industry that go back to 1982, it has decades of experience. Today it has a 13-acre fruit and vegetable processing plant in Grandview Washington, while its 19-acre Prosser campus includes facilities for dry ingredient processing and freezing. Offering a wide variety of juices, purees, concentrates, essences, fibers, seeds, seed oils and seed powders, FruitSmart takes great pride in developing solutions for manufacturers and using fruit in new and novel ways.