Aug 9, 2021
By Katherine Richardson, LBB Senior Strategist
Bodega Files is an LBB series based on New York’s biggest food & beverage trendsetters: our local bodegas. These corner shops usually stock the newest, hippest items way before grocery stores know they exist. Each installment, we’ll be exploring a new bodega trend and what it means for the food and bev industry.
My local bodega’s fridge is filled with a rainbow-colored display of beverages. You’ve got your classics like Snapple and Diet Coke and Gatorade, but you’ve also got the new kids on the block: functional beverages.
There’s Recess (CBD infused sparkling drinks), Poppi (prebiotic-infused sodas), Mude (drinks for “play, sleep and work,” infused with B vitamins and polyphenols)… the list goes on. Each of them claim benefits that go beyond simple nutrition – they’re multi-taskers, boosting your mood, your gut health, or your productivity in one fell swoop.
Functional beverages aren’t new. The category has been growing like crazy, with a Compound Annual Growth rate of almost 9% since 2019. Consumers, emerging from a global pandemic and more health and wellness-obsessed than ever before, are encountering an explosion of these products – and companies are trying new tactics to stand out.
Enter Kin, a beverage company taking “functional” to new heights.
Kin created a new category of functional beverages called “euphorics,” which they claim to be alcohol alternatives that “ease stress, mellow the mood, and balance the effects of stress on the body.” Their beverages are formulated with adaptogens for stress, nootropics for cognition, and botanicals for immunity and “grounding your spirit” (whatever that means). One of their most popular beverages, the Kin Spritz, is made with rhodiola, GABA, caffeine, hibiscus, and ginger for an energetic buzz.
The beauty of Kin is that it lives at the intersection of two growing categories: non-alcoholic spirits and functional beverages. It elevates the existing options in alcohol alternatives (like Seedlip, Spiritless, and Ritual Zero Proof) with added health and brain benefits.
Since Kin’s launch, the world of functional alcohol-alternatives has seen new entrants like Three Spirit, Curious Elixirs and Bonbuz, and the category is sure to grow. The LBB team will be watching this space and taste-testing (for research, of course).