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04 Mar 2024

Alo & Jenji to launch new boba tea RTD range at IFE 2024

Alo & Jenji to launch new boba tea RTD range at IFE 2024

SPI West Port, the makers of ALO Drink, the #1 aloe vera beverage brand in the U.S. and Canada, introduces a brand-new line of ready-to-drink boba teas under the brand name JENJI. 

Boba tea, also known as bubble tea or pearl tea, hails from Taiwan in the 1980s, where fresh boba tea shops are now ubiquitous. Boba tea starts with a base of brewed tea, usually a milk tea. Boba pearls--chewy, marble-sized spheres traditionally made from tapioca starch--are added to the tea. One of the hottest trend in the beverage industry, bricks-and-mortar fresh boba tea shops are growing in popularity across the United States.

Fortune Business Report estimates that the boba tea market was worth $2.02 billion in 2019, and by 2027, is expected to reach $3.39 billion. Bloomberg reported in June 2023 that a recent CLSA survey of consumers showed that 94% of those aged between 20 and 29 bought boba tea within the last three months.

Jenji is set to capitalize on the boba craze and bring the boba phenomenon to the ready-to-drink market with its RTD boba teas. Two lines of Jenji Boba Teas are available.

The Jenji Original line, crafted for the convenience and mass market channels, features four different flavours—Original Milk Tea, Matcha Latte, Strawberry Latte, and Brown Sugar. Containing no artificial colours or flavours, Jenji Original boba teas are packaged in 16.5 oz. (490mL) aluminium cans.

The Jenji Pure line, designed for conventional and natural grocery channels, features three varieties of all-natural coconut milk teas. Original Milk Tea, Matcha, and Mango Latte flavours are available packaged in 10.8 oz (320mL) aluminium slim cans.

All varieties are vegan friendly and, free of GMOs, artificial colours, flavours, and preservatives. Both Jenji Original and Jeni Pure feature the brand’s proprietary Coco Jelly Boba pearls, providing a lighter, lower carb alternative to traditional tapioca pearls—32g per 100g vs.88g for tapioca pearls.

The company’s Executive Vice President Brian Choi explains, “typical boba pearls found in fresh boba shops are made with tapioca, a starch extracted from the cassava root. It’s the chewy, and springy texture of the tapioca pearls that has drawn fans from far and wide. Tapioca pearls, however, don’t work well in ready-to-drink beverages.

"Over time, they expand and disintegrate, losing the very glutinous springiness that makes boba so popular. Others have tried to mimic the tapioca mouthfeel by using boba made primarily with konjac, a root vegetable similar to a potato that holds up a bit better in liquid.

"We’ve found, however that Konjac doesn’t have the springiness and firmness of tapioca, and instead tends to be gritty and sandy and just not pleasant, and it just tends to get worse over time. So here at Jenji, we’ve developed our unique Coco Jelly Boba--a boba made of coconut jelly.

"A semi-translucent, white, jelly-like food made by the fermentation of fresh coconut water, coconut jelly not only holds up better in liquid, but also has a light, firm, chewy mouthfeel that boba fans adore.”

Jenji Boba Teas are available now from SPI West Port in the U.S., and from the company’s UK distributor partner, Unione Trading Europe.

Louis Hur, Managing Director of Unione Trading, asserts, "Our partnership with SPI West Port, initiated in 2011, has been a cornerstone of our business, particularly through their ALO brand, which has significantly contributed to our portfolio. We are enthusiastic about broadening this relationship to include the Jenji brand.

"The excellence in branding and the superior quality of their ingredient selection have been impressive. Jenji's product offers a refreshingly delightful taste, setting a new benchmark for ready-to-drink, shelf-stable boba teas. This step not only enhances our product lineup but also reinforces our commitment to providing our customers with innovative and enjoyable beverage options." |


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