Q. It has been said that energy-positioned products without caffeine don't sell well because people have to feel that "buzz," i.e. they have to perceive an immediate effect. What's your view?
Energy is a broad term with a variety of meanings to different groups. The trend is away from caffeine in search of healthy energy. While consumers may feel a quick buzz, it is often followed by a crash, which consumers are trying to avoid. Many energy beverages do not contain an effective dose of alternative compounds for consumers to notice. In a clinical study with baby boomers, Bioenergy Ribose was shown to have a measurable difference with subjects at 1.5g. As consumers look for a healthy approach to energy, I'm optimistic that manufacturers will search for energy ingredients beyond caffeine."
–Kathy Lund, vice president of sales and marketing Ribose Ingredient Division
Bioenergy Life Science, Inc.
"What we're finding with beverages, and especially more and more with athletes, is people are asking for mental energy (with Kyowa's brain health ingredient Cognizin) as opposed to physical energy products. Because physical energy they can get from sugar. But if they're not focused they're not going to finish with the time they want. They're not going to hit their numbers. We also found there are a ton of athletes taking a lot of caffeine. So caffeine does work but it also has some negative side effects. A lot of these guys are taking so much caffeine they're shaking and it disrupts their focus."
–Karen Todd, director of marketing
Kyowa Hakko USA