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Adding value to sugar: Exciting flavours and product innovation

09 January 2015

When buying sugar the majority of hot drinks consumers are vastly motivated by price. To avoid a race to the bottom, manufacturers need to come up with new ways to add value, such as flavoured sugar and sugar on wands.

Canadean asked UK consumers how they take their hot drinks – a market valued at £2.0 billion in the UK in 2014 – and found that 30% of consumers add sugar to their tea, coffee or hot chocolate. The survey shows that a low price is by far the most influential criteria when buying sugar, with 60% of consumers saying they are price-driven. By comparison, quality – the second biggest criteria – is only important to 31%. Packaging design and health benefits are the least important to consumers, with only 1% and 6%, respectively, saying that these are deciding factors when purchasing sugar. 

Veronika Zhupanova, analyst at Canadean, says: “The desire for better price means that manufacturers who want to charge more have to make sure they convey clearly why consumers should pay extra.”

Adding perks to regular drinks

When Canadean asked those taking sugar with their hot drinks if they were interested in flavoured sugar, such as lemon, mint, or alcohol flavour (without alcohol in it), over a third (37%) expressed interest, while over a quarter (28%) were interested in sugar with alcohol.

Zhupanova says, “flavoured sugar adds elements of fun and novelty to regular hot drinks and presents an opportunity for manufacturers to add value, and also to highlight the product's quality via tasty flavours.”

Sugar as a touch of class 

The survey also found that 41% of UK consumers who add sugar to their hot drinks are interested in ‘sugar on a stick’, a stirring wand with sugar on the bottom which was designed to sweeten up hot beverages, while also adding charm to the consumption process. Over half of the respondents (51%) are even prepared to pay extra to use the sugar wand at home, while 31% would pay more for an out-of-home experience.

“Such results show that UK consumers are seeking to add a touch of class and new experiences to their regular coffee or tea. Furthermore, the sugar wand has the potential to tap into the market of hot alcoholic drinks such as mulled wine or cider,” Zhupanova adds.

Flavoured Sugar

Flavoured sugar, such as Steenbergs' organic cinnamon sugar, adds elements of fun and novelty to regular hot drinks.

Sugar On A Wand

In summer 2014, the Belarusian manufacturer Belgospishcheprom rolled out ‘sugar on a wand.’ The 8g wand was designed to make a cup of coffee “immutably delicious” and add charm to the consumption process.

 

 

NOTES

All numbers used in this text are based on a Canadean survey of 2,000 UK adults, conducted in December 2014. 

Please get in contact if you have any questions to this or other Canadean surveys. Analysts are available to comment. Contact the Canadean press office on +44 (0) 207 936 6536 or email press@canadean.com

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