Australia’s Kommunity Brew believes that hemp has the potential to feature more widely in its NPD and innovation strategies, amidst the addition of more local acquisitions to its healthier beverage portfolio.
Early this year, the firm entered a partnership with Australian medicinal cannabis company MediCann Health to produce hemp-infused beverages.
Speaking to FoodNavigator-Asia about healthy beverage innovation, Kommunity Brew’s founder and CEO Mason Bagios pointed to the growing interest towards hemp used in a functional beverage, as well as “healthier hydration drinks.”
Beating the dram: ‘New World’ NZ whiskey brand Pokeno banks on flavour innovation to boost appeal with younger consumers overseas
New Zealand’s Pokeno Whiskey believes that rising demand from younger consumers seeking new and unique flavours in their whiskey will help to drive its latest offering in markets such as Singapore and Hong Kong.
It recently launched what it believes is the world-first single malt whiskey matured in Totara barrels, with a limited release of 1,800 bottles in nine international markets, including China, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Taiwan.
The a2 Milk Company (a2MC) said its infant milk formula business in China grew 8.4 per cent for the financial year ending on June 2023 and that it would focus on growing its cross-border e-commerce (CBEC) and lower tier cities presence.
Its China label product – a2 至初® – have outperformed with sales growth of 27.8 per cent to NZD$559.3 million (US$333.4m) . In the second half of the year, sales were also up 16 per cent yoy.
Australia and New Zealand are lagging behind when it comes to alt-protein innovation and advances, with capital and commercialisation challenges holding the sector back.
While Australia and New Zealand are some of the world’s biggest agricultural producers, alt-protein producers in these countries largely rely on importing high value inputs, such as protein concentrates for plant-based meat.
According to think tank Food Frontier, the challenge lies in creating higher value ingredients, instead of importing them.
The New Zealand co-op forecasted improved margins across consumer and foodservice channels for FY24 and said there were indications that demand for milk powders will begin to return from early 2024.
Fonterra’s normalized profit after tax was NZ$1.3bn, an increase of NZ$738m compared to the same time last year. The co-op completed the divestment of its Chilean business Soprole (a gain of NZ$260m) and China JV, China Farms, resulting in profit after tax of NZ$1.6bn, up NZ$994m.