25 Sep Healthy teas are driving the health & wellness market
Unilever purchases Pukka Tea
In a massive turn of events for herbal tea business, Pukka, Unilever recently added them to their huge band of brands. This, it would seem, is in a bid to meet the growing consumer demand in the upmarket, organic brew sector of the health and wellness industry.
As one of the world’s leading fast moving consumer goods producers, Unilever is a company committed to ethical sourcing and practices when it comes to the production of their goods. An ideal also close to the heart of all those at Pukka.
Unilever also counts Australian tea company, T2, PG Tips and Pure Leaf as part of their portfolio of beverage brands. The question remains at this point, will Pukka really be able to stay true to their fundamentals of 100% organic, fair trade and fair wild now that control has been handed over to an international corporation such as Unilever?
As a leader in social and environmental change and sustainability, the co-founders at Pukka are confident that the FMCG giant will meet their ideals. The acquisition has been pinned down to a matter of scale and sustainability. With Unilever, the co-founders of Pukka believe they will be able to reach a far larger segment of the health and wellness market, procuring new levels of opportunity.
How is the health market being driven by ‘healthy teas’?
With strong growth and drive towards living a ‘cleaner’ and healthier lifestyle over the past decade, the healthy teas market has seen a clear boom across the globe. According to research analysts in Europe, both fruit and herbal tea sales were valued at €1.6bn in 2016, while the fruit and herbal tea market grew by 6.8% in value overall.
Much of the growth of the fruit, herbal and detox tea market can be attributed to the trend of a greater focus on living sustainably. This also means purchasing sustainably- buying from a brand that is in-line with these values. Pukka Herb Tea is one such company that has shown exponential growth in recent years due to their focus on meeting consumer demand when it comes to health and wellness, sourcing and manufacturing their products ethically.
Marketing, branding & variety
The growth of the healthy teas market had also been pinned down to an increased range of variety, and subsequent marketing thereof – essentially offering a tea for all times of the day. No longer is tea reserved as a mid-morning pick-me-up or post-dinner wind down, in today’s market there is a herbal or fruit tea for every occasion.
There has been a noticeable increase in teas that are branded for specific requirements. For example, Ginseng tea branded as a ‘rise and shine tea’ is now on offer, ubiquitously, and is not a ‘speciality’ tea which can only be purchased from a ‘specialty’ store. Marketing around the healthy teas market has become niche-orientated – if the consumer has a common ailment e.g. Sleeplessness or anxiety, a marketing focus is being built around this.
This type of marketing, combined with creative, attractive branding has paved the way for healthy teas to break through as a group of mainstream, in-demand beverages that cater to every occasion.
Along with this, tea producers have made it their mission to emphasise the benefits and functionality of their products. Brands such as Pukka Tea, Health & Heather, Dr Stuart’s and Yogi have become well-known as sophisticated teas and have thus put healthy teas on the proverbial map in sales over recent years.
Manufacturers keeping up with demand
In today’s healthy teas market, manufacturers are now faced with the challenge of producing high quality products at a far higher rate – posing the risk of ‘cutting corners’ to meet consumer demand. To ensure a good quality product is manufactured, several parameters have to be set such as good agricultural and collection practices, various tests for contaminants such as pesticide and herbicide residue, and of course, high quality production methods. With the advent of nanotechnology, many botanical and herbal products are now being produced with strengthened stability, bioavailability and efficacy.
With a strong focus and increase in consumer demand of chemical and additive free products, the pressure is greater than ever on manufacturers. Ultimately, consumer demand in the healthy teas sector is being driven by efficacy and experience. If a plant-based product is manufactured with a touch of non-natural ingredients in order to boost the shelf-life and overall experience of the product, it has become apparent the educated consumer does not seem to mind all too much!