Online Exclusives

Twist for Better Taste

By Joanna Cosgrove, Online Editor | December 27, 2012

Tea of a Kind features a unique closure system that guarantees freshness by mixing beverages on demand.

Juice bars, coffee shops and other specialty beverage retailers routinely offer fresh-made smoothies, teas and other drinks with the option of energy shots, vitamin boosts or other functional additives mixed in just prior to consumption. While it’s possible to re-create fresh beverages in one’s home kitchen, it’s been decidedly less easy to formulate beverages in a preservative-free yet shelf-stable format. Enter the patented Gizmo Closure and Delivery System, a unique and patented pressurized bottle cap design that releases ingredients into a beverage when the cap is twisted.
The Gizmo cap is currently in use with a brand of teas called Tea of a Kind. The beverages look like ordinary, upscale bottles of water at first glance, because the brand’s big feature is concealed in the cap. Real brewed tea, all natural flavors and antioxidants are tucked into the pressurized nitrogen cap, which keeps the ingredients fresh without the use of chemical preservatives. The cap’s chamber defends the ingredients against harmful UV light, oxidation and other damaging conditions that can degrade nutrients in most pre-mixed beverages. Once the cap is twisted, the ingredients burst into the bottle and self-mix with a plume of color—a visual confirmation that the drink is fresh and ready to consume.
The innovative cap was the brainchild of Los Angeles, CA-based Gizmo Beverages, Founder and CEO, Don Park, and Co-Founder and President, Walter Apodaca. Mr. Park initially brainstormed the idea after pondering how he might add fresh lime juice into beer. It wasn’t long before he realized the design potential for the beverage industry at large.
Mr. Apodaca’s 20 years of beverage experience with companies such as Coca-Cola Enterprises, Coors Brewing Company and MillerCoors helped him immediately realize the vast potential for the Gizmo technology—quite possibly, he said, on the same level the aluminum can had on the beverage industry.
The system recently snagged the Best Ready-to-Drink Tea or Coffee title at the 2012 InterBev Awards, and was also a finalist in the Best Bottling Innovation, Best Packaging Innovation and Best Social Media Campaign categories, among more than 170 entries from 15 countries.
“We introduced a revolutionary pressurized closure, built a company and launched a ready-to-drink tea all in a little over a year, so it is an immense honor to be recognized for the innovation by peers and analysts who know this space and understand quality,” said Mr. Apodaca.
The creation of Tea of a Kind beverages to showcase the Gizmo cap grew out of both Mr. Park's and Mr. Apodaca’s struggles with serious illnesses that they said were a result of a poor diet that included sugary soft drinks and fast food. Through a commitment to dietary mindfulness, healthy choices and elimination of chemically processed foods, both men said they were able to steer their health back on track.
“I know I can give this drink to my kids and feel good about it,” said Mr. Park. “That is what keeps me excited. It’s good for you and it’s good for me. That’s the goal.”
Tea of a Kind invites consumers to “Re-imagine the pleasure of drinking,” and “Re-imagine the ritual of tea,” with three flavors: Peach Ginger Black Tea, Citrus Mint Green Tea and Pomegranate Acai White Tea. The 100% natural teas are formulated with ultra-purified water and contain naturally occurring antioxidants as a result of the black, green and white teas in the beverages. Each of the formulations are sweetened with stevia and sugar from evaporated cane juice, and contains 20 calories per 16 ounce bottle.
For more information about Tea of a Kind and its Gizmo cap technology, follow this link.

Related Nutraceuticals:

Related Market Segments: