Kate Vlietstra
Kate is a Global Food and Drink Analyst at Mintel. She specialises in analysing the dairy sector, with previous experience in FMCG sales and marketing roles.

The vibrant colours and exotic flavours of flowers lend themselves to food and drink innovation. Following an increase in launches of floral flavoured drinks, consumers around the world are becoming more interested in floral flavoured foods, due to the positive perception that flowers are natural and a desire for innovative, bold flavours. Moreover, certain flowers are known for their functional benefits, with consumers associating ingredients like lavender and chamomile with relaxation.

Flowers are not yet widely used in food products, but they are rising in popularity. According to Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD), there has been a 40% increase globally in launches of foods with floral flavours in the five years to July 2019.

Here, we highlight 8 products using floral ingredients for added flavour, texture or purely decorative purposes.

Lays Sakura and Milk Flavoured Potato Crisps – China

The sakura-flavoured food trend originated in Japan, where every spring all kinds of sakura-themed products occupy the shelves of Japanese stores to welcome the sakura blossom. It has only recently affected the Chinese market with the launch of Coca-Cola’s sakura-flavoured drink in 2018, followed by other big brand flavour extensions such as these Lays crisps.

Ajala Flowers and Oranges Flavoured Dark Chocolate – Czech Republic

This chocolate bar is enriched with energising wild orange extract and decorated with dried meadow flowers. The aesthetics of the chocolate is noted on its packaging, with the decorative flowers said to add an element of beauty.

Fermè Cashews Fermentino with Herbs and Flowers – UK

This organic, 100% plant-based alternative to cheese is described as fermented cashews preparation, infused with herbs and flowers. It’s a source of protein and is free from gluten and soy.

Orion Xylitol 3+ Flower Flavoured Sugar Free Chewing Gum – China

Available in two flavours, jasmine and rose, this gum contains real petal powder to fragrantly freshen breath. It offers consumers an unusual alternative to traditional minty and fruity flavours.

Volvic Infusion Bio Lychee and Passion Fruit Flavoured Infusion with a Touch of Hibiscus – Belgium

This organic certified RTD comprises natural Volvic mineral water with an organic hibiscus infusion and delicate flavours of lychee and passion fruit. It is low in sugar and calories and is said to be inspired by Piton de la Fournaise, the volcano on La Réunion Island.

Fantasia Creamy Yogurt with Mango and Rose Note – Poland

Launches of dairy products with floral flavours are growing steadily, predominantly driven by the yogurt category. This product, available in Poland, Latvia and Lithuania, combines creamy yogurt with a separate mango puree – with a hint of rose flavour.

Eat Me Ice Cream Lavender Dairy-Free Frozen Dessert – USA

This vegan, coconut-based product has been freshly churned in small batches and packed by hand. It claims to have relaxing properties and delivers floral, herbal and delicate notes to the palate. The manufacturer describes itself as a women-owned company on the ice cream packaging.

Schweppes Floral Pink Tonic Water Soft Drink – South Africa

Schweppes has added Floral Pink Tonic Water to its tonic water range in South Africa. The product is described as a delicate fusion of mimosa flowers and tangy citrus flavours. The rise in the number of consumers reducing their alcohol intake is creating opportunities for soft drinks such as tonics to step in as an alcohol-free alternative.