MINTEL | The future of sweet flavours has many potential opportunities. Here, Jenny Zegler, Associate Director, Mintel Food & Drink, take a look at two ways brands can innovate products with sweet flavours, as well as what brands are already doing to stand out on store shelves.

Innovative sweet products

Various forms of chocolate dominate global food and drink launches with sweet flavors that were introduced between November 2016 and October 2017, according to Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD). The Dr. Oetker Sweet Pizza with Chocolate is a frozen dessert pizza that is available in Portugal and is topped with chocolate sauce and three types of chocolate.

Tying flavours to a specific location provide approachable innovation as shown by the Hershey Company’s introduction of limited edition confectionery products with flavours inspired by six US states, such as Florida Key Lime Pie Twizzlers.

Vegetables are invading a host of sweet categories and can be used to create flavour profiles that are inherently less sweet. In bakery, carrots and other naturally sweet vegetables such as beetroot, parsnips, pumpkin, sweet potatoes and courgettes/zucchini can add flavour and texture to cakes, and help keep them fresh and moist. For example, Garden Lites Blueberry Oat Muffins from Canada is made with fresh zucchini and carrots.

Companies are also experimenting with products featuring new combinations of sweet with savoury or spicy flavours. In summer 2017, Germany’s Bahlsen biscuit company launched Leibniz Pick Up! Sandwich Cookies Filled with Chocolate & Chili, a pack of limited edition sweet biscuits that were flavoured with natural chilli flavour.

Jennifer Zegler

Jenny Zegler is a Global Food & Drink Analyst, blending Mintel Trends expertise with food and drink topics such as health, formulation, sustainability and premiumization.