Synergy Flavors Inc., a supplier of flavors, extracts and essences for the global food and beverage industry, served up Synergy Pure 100% Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate, the highest strength concentrate available on the market, at IFT.
Cold-brewed coffee is made using cold or room temperature water. Slow-steeped, the extraction time is usually between 10 to 24 hours and results in a product that is very different from hot-brewed coffee. Dr. Kevin Goodner, product manager for Synergy Pure Essences & Extracts, explained how “the different temperature affects the extraction efficiency of various compounds and results in a product that is generally less bitter and less acidic.” Taste is probably “the biggest aspect making cold-brewed coffee desirable as it creates a more palatable, less ‘harsh’ product,” he added.
With consumers increasingly health-focused and trying to cut back on sugar, fat and calories, the sweeter perception given by cold-brewed coffee is definitely an asset, according to the company. It allows people who don’t like the taste of regular hot-brewed coffee to enjoy a cup of plain coffee without the need to add sugar and/or cream, therefore making it a healthier option. Beyond the healthful appeal, cold-brewed coffee is also gaining traction as consumers prefer more sophisticated products and enjoy trying new styles of coffee preparation. According to research from Mintel, the popularity of cold-brewed coffee has exploded in the last year, with an estimated 115% growth from 2014-2015. Mintel research also indicates that 24% of consumers are currently consuming retail-purchased cold-brewed coffee. Nielsen reported that it reached $35 million in sales in this past year.
For RTD manufacturers supplying these commercial products, brewing their own cold-brewed coffee would hardly be efficient. In fact, they would need tremendous capacities to brew the volumes needed and the resulting coffee would not be concentrated and thus prone to spoilage. An external suppliers such as Synergy Flavors can provide Synergy Pure 100% Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate, which solves the capacity issue and provides a product versatile to use with inherent anti-microbial properties.
Among the cold-brewed concentrate options on the market, Synergy Pure’s cold-brewed coffee concentrate is the only highly concentrated and 100% cold-brewed available. Other offerings are either not as concentrated or consist of a cold-brewed coffee to which coffee powder had been added to increase the solids content. The addition of powder not only alters the overall transparency, which is key to building consumers’ trust, but it also compromises the taste by not being 100% cold brew.
“We have something that nobody else has; and we see great opportunities in the market for our cold-brewed coffee concentrate, mostly from premium brands who are committed to be true to their customers,” said Greg Bach, general manager, Synergy Flavors Ohio. “Coffee being one of the most popular beverages in the world, RTDs are definitely the main target for this new ingredient. However, we are seeing new trends emerge where coffee is blended in other products categories such as cultured dairy, alcohol, etc. and our cold-brewed concentrate could be a good match for these new product developments,” he commented.