By Chad Urlaub, Director of Business Development – Wine and Spirits
The ready-to-drink (RTD) beverage industry has experienced remarkable growth and transformation over the years. With consumers increasingly seeking convenience and on-the-go refreshment, the RTD market has evolved to cater to their diverse needs and preferences. From classic carbonated soft drinks to functional beverages and artisanal concoctions, the industry continues to push boundaries and innovate, making it a dynamic and exciting sector to watch.
Here are, in my opinion, the top drivers of the current RTD market:
Shifting Consumer Preferences:
The driving force behind the RTD beverage industry’s evolution is changing consumer preferences. Today’s consumers demand more than just thirst-quenching drinks; they seek functional benefits, healthier options, and unique flavor profiles. As a result, companies are investing heavily in research and development to create products that align with these preferences. From natural and organic ingredients to low-sugar formulations, the industry is adapting to cater to health-conscious consumers.
Diverse Product Range:
Gone are the days when RTD beverages were limited to soda and fruit juices. The industry has diversified its product offerings to include an array of exciting options. Energy drinks, iced teas, coffee-based beverages, plant-based milk alternatives, and even sparkling water have gained immense popularity. Consumers can now find a ready-to-drink option to suit their specific taste preferences and dietary requirements.
Functional and Wellness Beverages:
The rising health and wellness trend has significantly influenced the RTD industry. Functional beverages, enriched with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other beneficial ingredients, are gaining traction. Whether it’s probiotic-infused drinks for gut health, protein-based options for post-workout recovery, or beverages with adaptogens for stress relief, companies are tapping into the growing demand for products that support overall well-being.
How can I, as a beverage producer, keep up?
The task of keeping pace with ever-changing consumer demands can be daunting. So, beverage producers may be asking themselves,
“How can I launch or enhance an RTD beverage line to keep up with all of these trends?”
The answer is simple, your organization needs customized equipment that can adapt as you expand your product offerings. This is exactly where TechniBlend and our team of beverage experts shine. From blending, carbonating, pasteurizing, and filling, TechniBlend can help you breakthrough the rising ready-to-drink market.
Let’s start with blending:
TechniBlend’s latest Batching & Blending system is designed to create multiple streams of product utilizing our patented injection and dispersion components alongside high accuracy mass flowmeters quickly and easily. The system is available with integrated deaeration, product cooling, in-line carbonation, CIP On-Demand, and many other TechniBlend solutions to help you craft the best possible RTD.
Next up, carbonating:
One of the largest taste trends with today’s RTD market is the use of carbonation to add that crisp, bubbly taste to the beverage. Carbonation can often be a difficult process to accomplish consistently. However, using our carbonation solutions, beverage makers everywhere have experienced a drastic increase in efficiency.
ProCarb™ inline carbonation technology enables beverage producers to carbonate and nitrogenate their products 500% faster than the natural process. Whether you need a portable or inline carbonator, TechniBlend will work with your team to provide the best possible solutions to produce your RTD.
Do you have an effective pasteurization process?
Are you planning on using fruit flavors, creating multiple juices, teas, kombuchas and more? TechniBlend’s line of FlashPasteurizers can introduce these flavors and create your exact beverage consistently.
FlashPAS systems range in speeds from 10 – 200 gallons per minute with optional triple hold times. Our systems utilize state-of-the-art processes to rapidly heat and cool your products, effectively eliminating harmful microorganisms while preserving their original flavors and nutritional value. This is crucial in the production of ready-to-drink beverages.
Finally, canning your beverage:
RTD producers can easily fill and seam their beverage into any sized can using our ProFill Rotary Can Filler. Ranging from 100-600 cans per minute, our can fillers can be modified to fit your organization’s current output while also keeping future growth in mind. Rotary filling also keeps product integrity front of mind with little dissolved oxygen pickup (<30ppb) using our system.
TechniBlend is a beverage producers’ best option when it comes to producing or enhancing an RTD beverage for consumers. We pride ourselves on engineering excellence that focuses on what our partners need both now and in the future.
About the Author
Chad Urlaub, Director of Business Development, Wine and Spirits – Chad is an industry subject matter expert with a wide variety of experience. He has been instrumental in numerous projects with an array of solutions and machinery. Chad prides himself as an expert on all things blending, carbonating, filling, and everything in-between.