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Hotspots brings you the Mintel Trends team’s top observations on product and service launches from around the world. From a wellness shot that promotes energy to a preschool constructed from recycled plastics, find out the most innovative global initiatives happening this month.

NFT World Cup- Mexico

Cryptocurrency platform Bitso and the Mexican Football Federation have launched the first collectible NFT based on the Mexican team jersey. The collection consisted of 100 physical jerseys, each corresponding to an NFT version of the jersey that fans’ avatars can wear within Decentraland, a virtual world. The NFT jerseys offer an exclusive design, with each being unique and verifiable through blockchain technology, allowing them to be resold in subsequent transactions. 

The thin boundary between virtuality and reality is becoming increasingly blurry. With pop culture expanding into the metaverse and brands dipping their toes into the world of NFTs, the present is brighter than ever for digital proposals as many brands work to make crypto appeal to a wider range of consumers. With many young people working, consuming, entertaining and socializing virtually, avatars, NFTs and digital currencies have become part of daily life. Platforms specializing in virtual currencies are making their offerings more flexible and more widely available. 

Consumers, especially younger generations, are always interested in new proposals that technology may provide them with. Although the use of cryptocurrencies is expanding, it still remains a largely unexplored and sometimes even feared territory. Brands, especially those that are in the financial world, can generate initiatives that help consumers to acquire digital coins and subsequently use them as payment methods for everyday purchases. Activities and challenges taking place in the metaverse can offer digital coins as prizes, allowing consumers to later exchange their winnings for branded NFTs as well as tangible products such as limited edition clothing or merchandise.


Beatriz Monteiro- Senior Analyst, Mintel Trend, Latin America

Reclaimed Plastic Preschool- Vietnam

Vietnam’s first preschool constructed from reclaimed plastics has opened in Lao Cai province. All classrooms, furnishings and playground equipment of the small community preschool are entirely constructed from recycled plastics. Having successfully opened for class, the circular economy construction model is likely to be customized to bring preschool tuition to under-served communities elsewhere in Vietnam.

Children living in remote and underprivileged communities suffer from a lack of access to basic education.  The costs of construction are often considered too high to build new kindergartens and schools and train teachers in villages with small populations. The recycled plastic model reduces waste, lowers building costs and cuts carbon emissions. Already considered a proud local landmark, it will be used to promote the inclusive benefits of positive environmental action among community members of all ages.

Consumers understand that climate change and tides of plastic pollution are complex global challenges. They also know that time is running out to develop circular economy innovations that can scale up effectively. People who are connected to their natural surroundings will embrace creative initiatives that promote waste prevention and improve living conditions. They will also support brands and organizations that demonstrate environmental leadership and help more people to think and act in ways that conserve the planet’s rapidly depleting resources.


Joey Khong Analyst, Mintel Trends, Southeast Asia

Sign With Fingers Big & Small- United Kingdom

Cadbury Fingers has launched a campaign – ‘Sign With Fingers Big & Small’ – to encourage people to learn some sign language. This was inspired by Nestlé’s Passatempo initiative to teach kids to spell in Brazilian Sign Language through creative drawings. Cadbury’s campaign was created in partnership with the National Deaf Society, featuring little lessons in British Sign Language (BSL) to kick off the learning process and a short film shedding light on how giving others the platform to learn BSL makes deaf BSL users feel more included in everyday interactions.

There is a pressing need for brands to play an active role in championing the needs of under-represented consumer groups. As consumers are leaning towards brands to offer solutions, they have an opportunity to create disruptive and informative campaigns to bring important issues to the fore. Brand marketing and advertising agencies have a responsibility to signpost, promote and engage the wider community to create diverse and inclusive platforms for people to feel safe, respected and empowered.

Collective initiatives and disruptive integrated campaigns that are presented in solidarity are more likely to garner attention from brands. Consumers now expect brands to adhere to collective empowerment, creating inclusive spaces that appeal to everyone in order to establish safer and more sustainable platforms. Moving forward, brands across many influential sectors such as foodservice and beauty can take inspiration from campaigns like this to create engagement and continue championing under-served groups.


Narmada Sarvanantha- Analyst, Mintel Trends, Europe

More than an Energy Drink- US

More Than Energy (MTE) is an adaptogenic wellness shot that promotes energy, focus and mood. This 2oz shot aims to boost daily energy levels and cognitive function without excessive caffeine. Instead of traditional caffeine, MTE contains 50mg of theacrine that intends to deliver a steady source of energy without the common side effects of caffeine (eg jitters, anxiety). MTE is also formulated with superfoods such as ashwagandha, spirulina, Siberian ginseng, amaranth and maca.

Functional ingredients in beverages are growing in popularity, more than a quarter of US consumers would be motivated by functional benefits to try a new flavor of non-alcoholic beverage. Superfoods and adaptogens come across as healthier alternatives to the ingredients in energy drinks and brain-boosting supplements, making them an option for health-conscious consumers. While wellness shots are not a new concept, MTE’s wellness shot leverages the mood-boosting capabilities of its adaptogenic ingredients to appeal to consumers looking for healthier sources of energy.

The pandemic has inspired consumers to pay closer attention to their health. With this, consumers are looking to make more responsible decisions about the ingredients in their food and beverages. The rise of functional ingredients aligns with this renewed focus on health, and could be a lasting feature of ready-to-drink beverages alongside low-calorie or caffeine-free options. While these ingredients tend to be bitter, consumers may be willing to indulge in sweeter beverages to balance the benefits of these functional ingredients.


Kimberly Hernandez – Associate Analyst, Mintel Trends, North America

If you would like to learn more, check out other hotspots our analysts have identified in markets around the globe recently: July | August |September