In Drinks - non-alcoholic by Clyde Mooney

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In a drinks market of ‘premiumisation’ and quality over quantity, an Australian company is challenging the mainstream suppliers with high-quality, organic post-mix.

An increasing number of licensed venues around Australia are choosing upmarket options in both food and beverage, to attract increasingly discerning patrons.

The drive in raising drink quality, seen especially in ‘craft’ beer and boutique spirits, has largely surpassed the quality of the mixers being added to them. This has given rise to a market for premium bottled mixers, which don’t offer operators the same benefits of efficiency and profitability as post-mix.

Recognising a gap in the emerging drinks culture, Soda Press Co (SPC) has launched an organic syrup range that meets the premium mark with more of the cost and volume benefits. SPC reports four times the GP on drinks against using bottled pre-mix.

Addressing the tightly-held post-mix market and often complex contractual arrangements, the company has partnered with Vestal Water, backed by Zip, offering purchase and rental options on soda systems, installation and maintenance, to complement the syrup products.

Ahead of the Commercial Drinks Show taking place next week at the ICC in conjunction with Fine Food Australia, founder of SPC, “Head (Soda) Jerk” Cameron Romeril spoke with PubTIC about new tricks in an old game.

“We believe – and a lot of people agree – that premium spirits deserve a premium mix,” says Romeril. “Consumers want and deserve a healthier, more premium mixer and soda option. This is what we have been listening to, and are now delivering.”

Touting itself as “a little company with big ambitions” SPC is taking on on-premise supply channels, with its selection of handcrafted flavours offering a distinct point of difference, with classic bases as well as new recipes.

Romeril concedes the organic syrups are a little more expensive than mainstream, but offer several advantages. They contain up to 50 per cent less sugar, made using locally-sourced ingredients, and are preservative and GMO-free – each consumer drawcards in their own right.

Compared with similar quality bottled products, they offer large GP advantages, eliminate storage of boxes of bottles, and massively reduce waste – another an on-trend attraction, particularly with Gen Ys.

“Our post-mix systems will be able to deliver healthier, premium, and organic sodas and mixers at a fraction of the cost of pre-mix bottles of soda,” states Romeril.

“It will be offering venues a key point of difference and their customers a superior product.”

Soda Press Co’s Ginger Ale 4L