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Innova research highlights how floral flavours are having a moment

2024-05-13 Ingredients Network

Tag: Clean Label


A global consumer survey conducted by market intelligence company Innova Market Insights asked about flavour preferences. The findings are included as part of its newly published report, “Top Trends in Flavours for 2024 – Global”. Of particular interest is the fact that the report highlights how a broad range of floral ingredients came out as the fastest-growing flavour preference for packaged foods.

The survey findings also pointed to herbs, spices, and seeds, as the next most popular flavour trends. The research notes that all of these flavour preferences are linked to the fact that consumers are increasingly opting for food and drink that they associate with healthier properties.

Innova research links floral flavours to health benefits

Backing this up, Innova’s consumer survey showed that over half of the individuals it interviewed said they were opting for healthy flavours. In addition, their purchasing decisions were significantly influenced by flavours associated with better-for-you food and beverage options.

“Hibiscus, chamomile, and rose are the top floral flavours we see in new product launches in the past five years and all of these three are showing a growing trend,” said Marieke Bokkes, market analyst at Innova Market Insights.

“Some other growing flavours in new product launches are cherry blossom (CAGR 2019-2023: +8%) and chrysanthemum (CAGR 2019-2023: +8%). Some emerging floral flavours are passionflower (CAGR 2019-2023: +26%) and peach blossom (CAGR 2019-2023: +22%).”

A look at food and beverage launches featuring florals

Innova’s research has also singled out a number of recent beverage launches that have highlighted floral flavours, including Starbucks Sakura Matcha with Sakur Jelly, launched in Japan and featuring cherry blossom flavour; as well as Fanta Lemon and Elderflower, launched in Germany.

The research also points to many food launches with floral flavours, including Dukat Sensia Fierbera Yoghurt, with Inulin and lavender flavours, launched in Turkey, as well as a Haagen Daz’s Limited Edition Blooming Blueberry Tart Ice Cream in Singapore, marketed on the back as having floral notes.

Clearly, the healthier association with floral flavours is helping to drive consumer interest and resulting launch activity. Innova’s survey also noted that more than half of those interviewed perceive food and beverage products with herbal or floral botanical flavours as good for their health.

Floral flavours and functional ingredients linked to wellness

The survey also points to consumers’ linking foods with floral flavouring and functional ingredients as being particularly beneficial to holistic wellness, which is a key consumer trend in the food and beverage industry right now.

“Consumers believe that food and beverage with botanical flavours are good for their health,” said Bokkes. “Several botanical ingredients are also linked to [providing] specific benefits.”

“When we are looking at consumer data for floral flavours, we are seeing that consumers are preferring products with floral flavours especially when they want to feel relaxed/calm.”

The preference for these flavours also transcends health and wellness, with the association of florals as being natural, lending itself to a more favourable sustainability perception. This is backed up by further survey results showing that two out of three consumers perceive botanical flavoured ingredients as generally more sustainable.

Are floral notes seasonal or here to stay?

While the Innova research points to the fact that most of the food and beverage launches currently hitting the market feature natural floral fragrances, it also found that a smaller number of launches include synthetic floral ingredients.

Asked whether floral notes might be more of a seasonal trend, Bokkes commented that this could be the case, although there is the scope for it to expand beyond that.

“Ultimately this will depend on the floral flavour. Floral flavours that are linked to having a calming and/or relaxing effect (such as chamomile and lavender) will not be limited to just spring and summer,” said Bokkes.


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