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用龙舌兰做汽水,能有市场吗?

用龙舌兰做汽水,能有市场吗?

Rachel King 2021年09月10日
Maywell公司生产的碳酸汽水,以龙舌兰做增甜剂。

长期以来,由于对糖分以及其他添加剂的依赖,碳酸饮料似乎逐渐失去了人气。然而在过去几年中,这个市场又有所崛起,但以下这些碳酸饮料绝对称得上与众不同。

2020年创建的Mayawell便是其中最新面世的一个品牌,它涵盖一系列精心调配的碳酸饮料,完全不同于平常的那些可乐和柠檬汽水,其口味包括树莓黄瓜搭配黑醋粟、草莓生姜搭配芙蓉花,以及菠萝芒果搭配姜黄。每罐饮料含糖均不超过4克,热量40卡路里,同时还含有5克发酵纤维。这些碳酸饮料采用了天然活性龙舌兰(Active Agave)作为增甜剂。据该公司介绍,龙舌兰能够促进消化,并提升免疫系统和新陈代谢。

目前,Mayawell的产品通过其网站、精选店和亚马逊网站(Amazon)进行直销。这家总部位于奥斯汀的公司称,每出售一瓶,都会将部分收入用于支持原著墨西哥社区以及森林再造。

《财富》杂志最近采访了公司联合创始人文森特·瑞伊斯和奥利弗·沙特沃斯,谈到了其创业首年的经历、碳酸饮料初创企业的竞争格局,以及公司的未来规划。

Mayawell公司联合创始人文森特·瑞伊斯和奥利弗·沙特沃斯。图片来源:Courtesy of Mayawell

为简明起见,采访内容略有删减。

《财富》:可否透露下您二位成立Mayawell之前的职业背景?

文森特·瑞伊斯:在成立Mayawell之前,我是麦斯卡尔酒行业的一名先驱。当我第一次开始谈论麦斯卡尔酒可以与龙舌兰酒相媲美时,人们都觉得我疯了。1999年,我创建了自己的品牌El Señorio,2010年将其出售给一名战略合作伙伴。自那之后,我将注意力转向了龙舌兰保健效用的研究。我觉得我的人生使命就是帮扶瓦哈卡州土著居民社区,并尽自己最大努力为其赋能。

奥利弗·沙特沃斯:起初,我在广告行业工作了几年,之后在2012年,我在自己的公寓中从零开始,白手起家创建了一个名为Esperos的社交影响力品牌。受TOMS的启发,公司致力于销售背包和其他配件,并通过与海地、洪都拉斯、危地马拉和肯尼亚等国的非营利性机构合作,为人们接受教育提供资助。到2016年,Esperos销售额达到了7位数,远销四个大陆20多个国家。出于多种原因,我最后离开了这家公司,创建了一家基于植物的无毒个人护理品牌,名为Curie。后来我将该公司卖给了由多名强生公司(Johnson & Johnson)前高管组成的团队,他们更改了品牌名,并进行了重新定位,从事批发业务。

是什么启发你们创建了Mayawell?又是什么让它从众多新碳酸饮料品牌中脱颖而出?

瑞伊斯:说起这个很有意思,奥利弗和我都受到了龙舌兰女神玛雅胡尓的启发。在前西班牙文化中,她是生命和活力的重要象征,因此,我希望打造一款兼顾身体健康和可持续发展的龙舌兰产品。我花了6年多的时间与研究人员和科学家团队合作,开发了公司独特的活性龙舌兰产品,并证明了其在维持健康肠道菌群方面的效用。

幸运的是,奥利弗和我通过一位共同的好友介绍认识,命运让我们走到了一起,并创建了Mayawell公司。我们在纽约市花了一周的时间,探讨共同的愿景和信念:益生元将在确保当代客户肠道健康方面发挥重要的作用。在第一周结束之时,我们决定开展合作,并成立这家公司。

沙特沃斯:如今,益生元领域有点类似于狂野的西部。市场上有很多品牌都在宣传益生元的作用,但并没有真正的科学依据支撑,在某些品牌中,它们的产品并不含益生元纤维。Mayawell的独特之处在于,我们开展了6年的科学研究,能够证实我们的活性龙舌兰可以保留健康肠道菌群,改善肠道整体健康,这也是我们所宣传的功效。此外,我们还在瓦哈卡州创建了出色的社会影响力项目,由文森特执掌,我们通过龙舌兰种植、作物造林以及将龙舌兰纤维改造为编织材料,对土著社区进行支持。您的每一次购买都将为这些动议提供一臂之力。

Mayawell的口味包括草莓生姜、菠萝芒果、树莓黄瓜和梨子青柠。图片来源:Courtesy of Mayawell

Mayawell品牌的一个重要卖点在于,碳酸饮料是一个更健康的选择。对于未来推出的饮料配方,你们会采取什么样的研究和开发流程?你们会对哪些配料进行测试?

沙特沃斯:从一开始,我们便受到了15世纪果汁甜酒理念的启发,其受欢迎的原因在于它有助于消化,也能够提神。与此同时,我们希望在其中融入一些墨西哥风味,并开发可以吸引广泛受众的产品。毕竟在我们看来,当代汽水完全能够做到健康与口感兼得,因此,我们希望打造一款口感风味俱佳、人见人爱的饮品。

瑞伊斯:令我们感到非常幸运的是,我们的合作方是全球最好的产品开发者之一,而且我们与其合作来发现可以让客户眼前一亮的风味配方。在此基础上,我们会缩小最中意的候选配方,并通过团队讨论来决定哪些风味有望成为市场的宠儿。

长期以来,至少在过去10年中,很多消费者出于对健康的考虑,开始放弃熟悉的碳酸饮料品牌。你们觉得在过去几年中发生了哪些变化,这一趋势是否会延续下去?

沙特沃斯:2017年,美国瓶装水销量超过了汽水的销量,这还是这么多年以来第一次出现这一现象。这个转折点背后的原因似乎在于,人们越发意识到过量摄入糖会引发众多负面影响。即便如此,最近的调查显示,美国人每日平均摄入22茶勺的添加糖分,也就是每日350卡的额外热量,含糖饮料是最主要的元凶。与此同时,95%的美国人每日的膳食纤维摄入量都在推荐值以下,而膳食纤维对于消化道健康至关重要。

瑞伊斯:在Mayawell,为了解决这两大问题,我们在每一罐产品中仅添加了1茶勺的糖,同时提供20%的日推荐膳食纤维摄入量。我们的产品升糖指数低,果糖含量也低,对于有着广泛饮食要求的人群来说是一个绝佳的选择。种种迹象表明,客户想要的是一款口感和功能性俱佳的产品,而且令我们感到振奋的是,公司今后有机会在这个新兴领域大展拳脚。

每罐12盎司装Mayawell益生元碳酸饮料都含有5克可发酵纤维,其热量低于40卡。图片来源:Courtesy of Mayawell

Mayawell称,公司会将每笔收入的一部分用于支持墨西哥土著居民社区和造林事业。能具体解释下创建这个项目的原因吗,以及公司会如何捐赠这些销售所得吗?

瑞伊斯:作为一位土生土长的瓦哈卡州人,我认为有一点十分重要:土著人社区应该得到公平、平等的待遇,他们对我们的土地,特别是龙舌兰有着深厚的认知。与奥利弗一样,我们的目标是与我们的龙舌兰采购合作方一道,打造一家能够带来积极影响的公司,并重点关注瓦哈卡州。

在过去20年中,我已经通过我的非盈利机构Hermano Maguey与当地社区建立了良好的关系,这些社区也是Mayawell的合作伙伴。我们将通力合作,为当地社区提供龙舌兰种子库、造林所需的原生植物物种,以及种植龙舌兰作物的资源,以供出口创利。通过从合作伙伴手中采购龙舌兰并将公司利润的2%投入这些项目,我们将努力为瓦哈卡州带来实质性的影响。(yabo88ios)

译者:冯丰

审校:夏林

长期以来,由于对糖分以及其他添加剂的依赖,碳酸饮料似乎逐渐失去了人气。然而在过去几年中,这个市场又有所崛起,但以下这些碳酸饮料绝对称得上与众不同。

2020年创建的Mayawell便是其中最新面世的一个品牌,它涵盖一系列精心调配的碳酸饮料,完全不同于平常的那些可乐和柠檬汽水,其口味包括树莓黄瓜搭配黑醋粟、草莓生姜搭配芙蓉花,以及菠萝芒果搭配姜黄。每罐饮料含糖均不超过4克,热量40卡路里,同时还含有5克发酵纤维。这些碳酸饮料采用了天然活性龙舌兰(Active Agave)作为增甜剂。据该公司介绍,龙舌兰能够促进消化,并提升免疫系统和新陈代谢。

目前,Mayawell的产品通过其网站、精选店和亚马逊网站(Amazon)进行直销。这家总部位于奥斯汀的公司称,每出售一瓶,都会将部分收入用于支持原著墨西哥社区以及森林再造。

《财富》杂志最近采访了公司联合创始人文森特·瑞伊斯和奥利弗·沙特沃斯,谈到了其创业首年的经历、碳酸饮料初创企业的竞争格局,以及公司的未来规划。

为简明起见,采访内容略有删减。

《财富》:可否透露下您二位成立Mayawell之前的职业背景?

文森特·瑞伊斯:在成立Mayawell之前,我是麦斯卡尔酒行业的一名先驱。当我第一次开始谈论麦斯卡尔酒可以与龙舌兰酒相媲美时,人们都觉得我疯了。1999年,我创建了自己的品牌El Señorio,2010年将其出售给一名战略合作伙伴。自那之后,我将注意力转向了龙舌兰保健效用的研究。我觉得我的人生使命就是帮扶瓦哈卡州土著居民社区,并尽自己最大努力为其赋能。

奥利弗·沙特沃斯:起初,我在广告行业工作了几年,之后在2012年,我在自己的公寓中从零开始,白手起家创建了一个名为Esperos的社交影响力品牌。受TOMS的启发,公司致力于销售背包和其他配件,并通过与海地、洪都拉斯、危地马拉和肯尼亚等国的非营利性机构合作,为人们接受教育提供资助。到2016年,Esperos销售额达到了7位数,远销四个大陆20多个国家。出于多种原因,我最后离开了这家公司,创建了一家基于植物的无毒个人护理品牌,名为Curie。后来我将该公司卖给了由多名强生公司(Johnson & Johnson)前高管组成的团队,他们更改了品牌名,并进行了重新定位,从事批发业务。

是什么启发你们创建了Mayawell?又是什么让它从众多新碳酸饮料品牌中脱颖而出?

瑞伊斯:说起这个很有意思,奥利弗和我都受到了龙舌兰女神玛雅胡尓的启发。在前西班牙文化中,她是生命和活力的重要象征,因此,我希望打造一款兼顾身体健康和可持续发展的龙舌兰产品。我花了6年多的时间与研究人员和科学家团队合作,开发了公司独特的活性龙舌兰产品,并证明了其在维持健康肠道菌群方面的效用。

幸运的是,奥利弗和我通过一位共同的好友介绍认识,命运让我们走到了一起,并创建了Mayawell公司。我们在纽约市花了一周的时间,探讨共同的愿景和信念:益生元将在确保当代客户肠道健康方面发挥重要的作用。在第一周结束之时,我们决定开展合作,并成立这家公司。

沙特沃斯:如今,益生元领域有点类似于狂野的西部。市场上有很多品牌都在宣传益生元的作用,但并没有真正的科学依据支撑,在某些品牌中,它们的产品并不含益生元纤维。Mayawell的独特之处在于,我们开展了6年的科学研究,能够证实我们的活性龙舌兰可以保留健康肠道菌群,改善肠道整体健康,这也是我们所宣传的功效。此外,我们还在瓦哈卡州创建了出色的社会影响力项目,由文森特执掌,我们通过龙舌兰种植、作物造林以及将龙舌兰纤维改造为编织材料,对土著社区进行支持。您的每一次购买都将为这些动议提供一臂之力。

Mayawell品牌的一个重要卖点在于,碳酸饮料是一个更健康的选择。对于未来推出的饮料配方,你们会采取什么样的研究和开发流程?你们会对哪些配料进行测试?

沙特沃斯:从一开始,我们便受到了15世纪果汁甜酒理念的启发,其受欢迎的原因在于它有助于消化,也能够提神。与此同时,我们希望在其中融入一些墨西哥风味,并开发可以吸引广泛受众的产品。毕竟在我们看来,当代汽水完全能够做到健康与口感兼得,因此,我们希望打造一款口感风味俱佳、人见人爱的饮品。

瑞伊斯:令我们感到非常幸运的是,我们的合作方是全球最好的产品开发者之一,而且我们与其合作来发现可以让客户眼前一亮的风味配方。在此基础上,我们会缩小最中意的候选配方,并通过团队讨论来决定哪些风味有望成为市场的宠儿。

长期以来,至少在过去10年中,很多消费者出于对健康的考虑,开始放弃熟悉的碳酸饮料品牌。你们觉得在过去几年中发生了哪些变化,这一趋势是否会延续下去?

沙特沃斯:2017年,美国瓶装水销量超过了汽水的销量,这还是这么多年以来第一次出现这一现象。这个转折点背后的原因似乎在于,人们越发意识到过量摄入糖会引发众多负面影响。即便如此,最近的调查显示,美国人每日平均摄入22茶勺的添加糖分,也就是每日350卡的额外热量,含糖饮料是最主要的元凶。与此同时,95%的美国人每日的膳食纤维摄入量都在推荐值以下,而膳食纤维对于消化道健康至关重要。

瑞伊斯:在Mayawell,为了解决这两大问题,我们在每一罐产品中仅添加了1茶勺的糖,同时提供20%的日推荐膳食纤维摄入量。我们的产品升糖指数低,果糖含量也低,对于有着广泛饮食要求的人群来说是一个绝佳的选择。种种迹象表明,客户想要的是一款口感和功能性俱佳的产品,而且令我们感到振奋的是,公司今后有机会在这个新兴领域大展拳脚。

Mayawell称,公司会将每笔收入的一部分用于支持墨西哥土著居民社区和造林事业。能具体解释下创建这个项目的原因吗,以及公司会如何捐赠这些销售所得吗?

瑞伊斯:作为一位土生土长的瓦哈卡州人,我认为有一点十分重要:土著人社区应该得到公平、平等的待遇,他们对我们的土地,特别是龙舌兰有着深厚的认知。与奥利弗一样,我们的目标是与我们的龙舌兰采购合作方一道,打造一家能够带来积极影响的公司,并重点关注瓦哈卡州。

在过去20年中,我已经通过我的非盈利机构Hermano Maguey与当地社区建立了良好的关系,这些社区也是Mayawell的合作伙伴。我们将通力合作,为当地社区提供龙舌兰种子库、造林所需的原生植物物种,以及种植龙舌兰作物的资源,以供出口创利。通过从合作伙伴手中采购龙舌兰并将公司利润的2%投入这些项目,我们将努力为瓦哈卡州带来实质性的影响。(yabo88ios)

译者:冯丰

审校:夏林

For a long time, it seemed like sodas were increasingly unpopular, with focus on all the sugar and other additives. But over the last few years, there has been a boom in the market—but these sodas are different.

Among one of the newest options is Mayawell, which launched in 2020 with a curated range of sodas that aren't your average colas and lemon-lime fizzy drinks. Flavors include raspberry cucumber with black currant, strawberry ginger with hibiscus, and pineapple mango with turmeric. Each can has less than four grams of sugar and 40 calories per serving, packing five grams of fiber in as well. The sodas are sweetened with organic, hand-harvested Active Agave, which the company says improves digestion while bolstering the immune system and metabolism.

The brand sells direct-to-consumer via its website, in select stores, and Amazon. And the Austin-based company says it supports indigenous Mexican communities and reforestation with every purchase.

Fortune recently spoke with cofounders Vicente Reyes and Oliver Shuttlesworth about the first year in business, the competitive soda startup scene, and plans for the future.

The following interview has been condensed and lightly edited for clarity.

Fortune: Can you share a bit about your professional background prior to launching Mayawell?

Vicente Reyes:Prior to launching Mayawell, I was a pioneer in the mezcal industry. People called me crazy when I first started talking about how mezcal could compete with tequila. I started my brand El Señorio in 1999 and sold it to a strategic partner in 2010. After that, I turned my focus to the health and wellness benefits of agave. I feel like my life's mission is to support indigenous communities around Oaxaca and empower them in whatever way that I can.

Oliver Shuttlesworth:After a couple of years in advertising, I launched a social impact brand called Esperos in 2012. Inspired by TOMS, we sold backpacks and other accessories and helped fund access to education through partnerships with nonprofit organizations in countries such as Haiti, Honduras, Guatemala, and Kenya. I bootstrapped the brand from my apartment, and by 2016 had built the brand to seven-figure sales with distribution across four continents and more than 20 countries. For a variety of reasons, I ultimately parted ways with the company to start a plant-based, nontoxic personal care brand called Curie, which was subsequently sold to a group of former Johnson & Johnson executives, rebranded, and repositioned for wholesale distribution.

What inspired you to launch Mayawell? What makes it stand out in the growing crop of new sodas on the market?

Reyes:Interestingly, Oliver and I were both inspired by the goddess of the agave, Mayahuel. She is an important symbol of life and vitality in pre-Hispanic cultures, and I was inspired to create a sustainable agave-based product that promoted wellness. I spent a little over six years working with a team of researchers and scientists to develop our unique Active Agave and prove out its efficacy in retaining healthy gut bacteria.

Thankfully, fate brought Oliver and me together to create Mayawell after we were introduced by a mutual friend. We spent a week in New York City discussing our shared passions and our belief that prebiotics would play an important role in gut health for modern customers. At the end of that first week, we had decided to partner together and found the company.

Shuttlesworth:Right now, the world of prebiotics is kind of the Wild West. Several brands on the market are touting prebiotic benefits with no real science behind them and, in some cases, zero prebiotic fiber present in their products. What makes Mayawell unique is that we have six years of scientific research that shows that our Active Agave does what we say it does: retain healthy gut bacteria to improve overall gut health. Beyond that, we have an incredible social impact program in Oaxaca helmed by Vicente through which we support indigenous communities with agave cultivation, crop reforestation, and the repurposing of agave fibers into woven materials. Every purchase helps support those initiatives.

A key component of Mayawell's brand is that this soda is a healthier option. What was your research and development process like for coming up with recipes? What kind of ingredients did you test?

Shuttlesworth:From the outset, we were inspired by the idea of drinking shrubs that date back to the 15th century, consumed as much for their digestive benefit as for refreshment. At the same time, we wanted to incorporate certain flavors from Mexico while developing products that appealed to a wide audience. After all, our thesis is that modern sodas can be both healthy and flavorful, so we wanted to develop products that are easy drinking and delicious for all to enjoy.

Reyes:We have the incredible fortune of working with one of the best product developers in the world, and we work collaboratively with her to identify flavor profiles that we believe would be interesting to customers. From there, we narrow in on our favorites and decide as a team which flavors we believe will resonate best in the market.

For a long time—at least over the last decade—it seemed like many consumers were starting to turn away from familiar soda brands, mainly due to health concerns. What do you think has changed in the last couple of years, and do you think this trend will continue?

Shuttlesworth:2017 was the first year that bottled water outsold soda in the USA in many, many years. That marked an inflection point that seems to stem from a growing understanding of the negative impacts of excessive sugar consumption. Even so, recent studies show that the average American consumes 22 teaspoons of added sugar per day. That's about 350 extra calories daily, with sugary beverages playing an outsize role in that. At the same time, 95% of Americans fail to consume the daily recommended value of dietary fiber, which is extremely important for digestive health.

Reyes:At Mayawell, we help address both of these issues by offering a product that has only one teaspoon of sugar while delivering 20% of the daily recommended value of fiber in every can. Our products are both low glycemic index and low in fructose, making them a great option for people with wide ranging dietary requirements. Customers are showing every indication that they're looking for products that offer both flavor and function, and we're excited by the opportunity to play a big role in this emergent category moving forward.

Mayawell says it supports indigenous Mexican communities and reforestation with every purchase. Can you explain more about the inspiration for this program as well as breakdown how those purchase proceeds are donated?

Reyes:As a native of Oaxaca, it is important to me that indigenous communities who have such incredible knowledge of our land and, more specifically, of agave are treated fairly and equitably. Together with Oliver, our desire is to build a company that helps to create a positive impact with our agave sourcing partners, with an acute focus in Oaxaca.

Over the past 20 years, I have developed strong relationships with local communities that Mayawell partners with through my nonprofit organization, Hermano Maguey. Together we provide local communities with access to an agave seed bank, native plant species for reforestation, and resources to cultivate agave crops for profitable export. In sourcing agave from our partners and reinvesting 2% of our profits into these programs, we are working to make a meaningful impact in Oaxaca.

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