#Trendspotting: 2020 Trend Predictions Part II

 In Blog, Trendspotting

Your source for the most up-to-date information on emerging beverage trends.


The New Year is here and Imbibe’s beverage experts predicted what will be top trends in 2020. Many of this year’s trends will be inspired by the beverage experience delivered through flavor, texture and color. Here is part II of our trends to watch in 2020.

Flowers, Herbs & Spices | Exotic Flavors | A Taste for Nostalgia | Sensory Appeal

Flowers, Herbs & Spices

Botanical flavors will continue to flourish in 2020 because they add
sophistication and nuance. Floral, herb, and spice flavors will primarily be
used in combination with familiar true-to-fruit flavors.


Hibiscus is a mainstream flavor that will will continue to be a popular choice because of its slight tartness, health benefits and bright pink color.

Trendsetters: Poland Springs blood orange hibiscus sparkling waterVital Proteins blackberry hibiscus collagen water, and Revive cherry hibiscus kombucha.


Floral flavors like lavender, rose and elderflower will be combined with flavors like berry, lemon and peach.

Trendsetters: Wild Tonic raspberry goji rose Jun kombuchaSmartwater raspberry rose sparkling water, and BOS white peach and elderflower sparkling iced tea.


Mint and basil will add subtle herbal notes to beverages. Common flavor combinations include watermelon mint and strawberry basil.

Trendsetters: Purpose Tea watermelon mint iced teaWaku lemon mint tonic, and Sprecher strawberry basil sparkling water.

Exotic Flavors

Flavors inspired by Latin American and Asian beverages will be combined
with familiar true-to-fruit or indulgent flavors. Global flavor fusions will introduce
consumers to exotic flavors and provide a more adventurous sensory experience.


Tea and coffee flavors from Asia are being used in several non-traditional categories like smoothies and milkshakes. Matcha and chai are the most mainstream flavors, but Thai tea and Vietnamese coffee are emerging as well.

Trendsetters: Odwalla vanilla matcha smoothieOWYN chai meal replacement shake, and Bootleggers Thai tea IPA.


Ginger is one of the most popular spices used in beverages because of its fiery kick and gut health benefits. Turmeric is also experiencing steady growth while spices like cardamom and chili are emerging flavors.

Trendsetters: Voss strawberry ginger sparkling waterActivia honey peach turmeric smoothie, and Bing Z peach and hatch chili energy kombucha.


Exotic fruits from Latin American and Southeast Asian countries will continue to be a fast-growing flavor category. Up-and-coming flavors include passionfruit, guava and dragon fruit.

Trendsetters: Gomega mango passionfruit enhanced waterCoca-cola strawberry guava Diet Coke, and KOE raspberry dragon fruit kombucha.

A Taste for Nostalgia

Flavors that trigger pleasant feelings of nostalgia are evergreen and may even be mood-boosting, so they will continue to be popular in beverages. This year nostalgic flavors will be inspired by baked goods, breakfast fare, and candy.


Brownie, cake and cookie flavors are popular in dairy, dairy alternative and protein drinks, but they will also be up-and-coming flavors in new categories like sports drinks and craft soda.

Trendsetters: Bang birthday cake pre-workoutSilk oatmeal cookie oat milk creamer, and Slim Fast fudge brownie batter keto meal replacement shake.


Breakfast flavors are being used in creamers, milkshakes, smoothies, and protein beverages. Up-and-coming flavors include iconic cereals (and cereal milk), french toast, and maple pancake.

Trendsetters: Coffee Mate Cinnamon Toast Crunch creamerO3 Omega strawberry french toast smoothie, and Dairy Queen cinnamon roll milkshake.


Classic candy flavors are being incorporated into flavored milks, creamers, milkshakes, lattes and protein drinks. Popular flavors include peanut butter cup, chocolate covered caramel, toffee, and cotton candy.

Trendsetters: Tim Horton’s Kit Kat lattePrairie Farms chocolate malted milk ball, and Starbucks toffee nut latte creamer.

Sensory Appeal

In addition to seeking out satisfying flavor combinations, consumers
will prioritize adventurous sensory experiences delivered through unique
textures and bright colors.


Thick, creamy and foamy textures will make familiar products like coffee, tea and smoothies more exciting. These sensory experiences will be delivered through ingredients like dairy toppings, aquafaba, and egg whites as well as nitro infusions.

Trendsetters: Bingo Tea cheese teaStarbucks Cold Brew with Foam, and Califia nitro oat milk latte.


Bubble tea made with tapioca “pearls” or popping boba and RTD juices with chia seeds introduced “chewable” beverages to the mainstream. Ingredients like boba are novel for CPG products, but brands will continue to play with chewy textures to create a unique sensory experience.

Trendsetters: Del Monte bubble fruit cupsKung Fu Tea bubble tea, and Mamma Chia beverages.


Brands will incorporate naturally colorful ingredients into beverages to make them appear more exotic and photogenic. Ingredients with bold colors like blue majik (derived from spirulina), turmeric, beet, matcha, and butterfly pea flower will be used to add a pop of color.

Trendsetters: Remedy Organics Blue Oxidants smoothieHoney Drop Galaxy lemonade, and Fruit Love harvest berry smoothie bowl.

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