In the United States, instant gratification has become commonplace thanks to technologies like smartphones and the Internet, but functional drinks also are making it a staple in the beverage industry. If consumers are tired, they can take an energy drink or shot and feel the effects within a few minutes. Likewise, if they are stressed out or can’t focus, fast-acting options are readily available.
When it comes time to select such functional beverages, consumers’ increased interest in natural or better-for-you products might lead them to purchase a drink formulated with botanicals, suggests Heather Biehl, associate director of the Health Ingredient Technology & Solutions (H.I.T.S.) team at Wild Flavors Inc., Erlanger, Ky.