Flower Power: Florals Add Flavor, Function & Unique Tastes

What’s a surefire way to build consumer interest and also create fragrant, colorful foods and beverages? Bring on the florals. Seasonal offerings continue to benefit from the classics, such as honeysuckle, jasmine, lavender and rose, according to a recent “Baker’s Journal” article, which also pointed out the positive side effect of “Instagrammable” products —thanks to the bright colors these florals often bring along for the ride.

“Flowers are very marketable,” the article said, adding that “florals can be enjoyed year-round.” The piece then tapped into the expertise of Keera Perumbala, marketing manager at Sensient Flavors, who explained: “Most consumers, our research finds, enjoy a known flavor combined with an exciting new blend. Think of chocolate lavender. The familiarity and indulgence of chocolate means less risk in trying out an otherwise surprising floral lavender.”

The lure of the new, augmented with color and taste

That’s in line with a Nielsen 2019 study that showed 42% of global consumers say they “love to try new things.” The coveted Millennial and Gen Z generations also want more from their food and beverage choices — they are after a complete sensory experience.

“Blends typically resonate better with consumers,” Perumbala added. That’s because pairing flavor stalwarts such as blueberry, lavender, chocolate and lemon lessens the unease consumers may have around an unfamiliar botanical such as elderflower. According to Mintel, only 26% of U.S. consumers are aware of elderflower, and a scant 9% have actually tried it.

“Herbs and spices are making their way into baked goods year round too. Along with florals, textures are having a moment as consumers get excited about the surprise element that they bring. Baked goods, such as cakes, can use edible flowers for decorative purposes. There are particulates, pieces and flakes that show up in some health-bar products, which excite consumers just as much. Popular health bars carry flavors like blueberry lavender and chocolate mint.”

Read the full article at Baker’s Journal.

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