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Crafting For Success: Real Fruit Purees a Market Differentiator at Belching Beaver

Posted by Araza Purees on

You could say that San Diego, California is hoppin’ when it comes to its beer scene.

According to the City of San Diego Economic Development Department, it ranks among the top 5 cities nation-wide with the most operating beer breweries, and craft breweries make up a sizeable portion of the overall industry.

Belching Beaver, launched in 2012, is a craft brewery headquartered in San Diego producing a variety of beers and hard seltzer. Its hard seltzer line-up includes three flavors: Passion Fruit & Guava, Pineapple & Mango, and Raspberry & Blackberry.

The brewery uses real fruit purees to flavor its hard seltzer, said Belching Beaver’s Brewmaster, Troy Smith.

From the start, it was important for the brewery to adhere to its “craft” roots and deliver a product that differentiated itself from the other hard seltzers on the market that were clear in color and used flavorings rather than real fruit.

“We are a craft brewery, not ‘big beer,’ and we wanted to take a craft approach to our hard seltzer that had all the characteristics, such as low calorie, low carb, and around 5 percent ABV, but really stood apart from the rest. That was our main goal,” said Smith.

“It took us a little longer to get to market with our hard seltzer, because it’s a bit more finicky working with real fruit than it is working with a tincture or extract that mimics a flavor,” he added.

However, not every fruit is a good candidate for hard seltzer, partly because when real fruit is fermented and the sugar is stripped out the result can be very tart. Citrus fruits are particularly difficult to work with for this reason, Smith said.

Hard seltzer made with real fruit puree instead of fruit flavoring results in a hazy colored beverage as opposed to clear, and a slightly different mouthfeel.  

Some consumers also detect a bit more acidity in products made with real fruit puree versus flavoring, which is not surprising said Smith, “because real fruit does have a higher acidity profile, like raspberries and passion fruit, for example.”

Belching Beaver recently expanded its hard seltzer line-up with a product that contains both real fruit puree and extracts. The newest hard seltzer is called the Blender Series.

Smith says the combination of real fruit and extracts offered more versatility and “allowed us to obtain some of those flavors that were lost during fermentation.”

Read more

You could say that San Diego, California is hoppin’ when it comes to its beer scene.

According to the City of San Diego Economic Development Department, it ranks among the top 5 cities nation-wide with the most operating beer breweries, and craft breweries make up a sizeable portion of the overall industry.

Belching Beaver, launched in 2012, is a craft brewery headquartered in San Diego producing a variety of beers and hard seltzer. Its hard seltzer line-up includes three flavors: Passion Fruit & Guava, Pineapple & Mango, and Raspberry & Blackberry.

The brewery uses real fruit purees to flavor its hard seltzer, said Belching Beaver’s Brewmaster, Troy Smith.

From the start, it was important for the brewery to adhere to its “craft” roots and deliver a product that differentiated itself from the other hard seltzers on the market that were clear in color and used flavorings rather than real fruit.

“We are a craft brewery, not ‘big beer,’ and we wanted to take a craft approach to our hard seltzer that had all the characteristics, such as low calorie, low carb, and around 5 percent ABV, but really stood apart from the rest. That was our main goal,” said Smith.

“It took us a little longer to get to market with our hard seltzer, because it’s a bit more finicky working with real fruit than it is working with a tincture or extract that mimics a flavor,” he added.

However, not every fruit is a good candidate for hard seltzer, partly because when real fruit is fermented and the sugar is stripped out the result can be very tart. Citrus fruits are particularly difficult to work with for this reason, Smith said.

Hard seltzer made with real fruit puree instead of fruit flavoring results in a hazy colored beverage as opposed to clear, and a slightly different mouthfeel.  

Some consumers also detect a bit more acidity in products made with real fruit puree versus flavoring, which is not surprising said Smith, “because real fruit does have a higher acidity profile, like raspberries and passion fruit, for example.”

Belching Beaver recently expanded its hard seltzer line-up with a product that contains both real fruit puree and extracts. The newest hard seltzer is called the Blender Series.

Smith says the combination of real fruit and extracts offered more versatility and “allowed us to obtain some of those flavors that were lost during fermentation.”

Read more


Hard Seltzer Gets Real

Posted by Araza Purees on

The popularity of hard seltzers is an undeniable success in the BWS (beer, wine and spirits) sector and future growth is set to remain robust.

Last year, the hard seltzer category grew an impressive 155 percent, and Goldman Sachs forecasts U.S. retail sales will expand from approximately $4.1 billion last year to $30 billion by 2025, comprising roughly 25 percent of the total alcohol beverage sector.

The appeal of hard seltzers is shared among producers and consumers.

For producers, there is a relatively low barrier to entry. Beer makers, for example, have been able to launch hard seltzer products by utilizing much of their existing equipment infrastructure and supplier network, including ingredients, packaging and distribution providers.

Consumers are attracted to the health aspects of hard seltzer, especially compared to spirits. From Baby Boomers to Gen Z’ers, hard seltzers are finding favor with a broad range of adults who are drawn to lower calorie and carb beverages that are also gluten-free, vegan, sell equally well to men and women, and are enjoyable year-round.

Not surprisingly, the overwhelming growth of hard seltzers means the sector is becoming more crowded and competitive.

As hard seltzer producers look to retain and expand their market share, they are sharpening their focus on flavor as a way to stand out from the competition.

Simply speaking, hard seltzers are made with water, sugar, yeast and flavoring. Many hard seltzers use chemically derived extracts to achieve the desired flavor. However, an increasing number of producers are opting for real fruit purees, which expand the possibilities for new and creative flavor profiles.

When combined with various spices, herbs, and even flowers such as hibiscus, the possibilities are virtually endless. Moreover, the use of real fruit and other ingredients are key to addressing consumers’ demands for food and beverage products whose ingredients are more transparent and healthy.

In March, SLO Brew, Central California’s longest-standing craft brewery, introduced Cali-Squeeze, a hard seltzer crafted with real fruit puree—a feature that was important to both the company and it’s customers.

In addition to flavor, real fruit also gives the hard seltzer an opaque color, which can range from purple to red to pale yellow.

“Our customers have been asking for a hard seltzer and we wanted to blow their expectations out of the water,” said SLO Brew co-founder Rodney Cegelski in a press release.

SLO Brew is not the only company getting into the hard seltzer segment or expanding an existing line-up.

New Belgium, Braxton Brewing, Cape May, New Realm Brewing, Molson Coors and Bud Light are among those that are also unveiling new offerings this spring.

Read more

Hard Seltzer Gets Real

Posted by Araza Purees on

The popularity of hard seltzers is an undeniable success in the BWS (beer, wine and spirits) sector and future growth is set to remain robust.

Last year, the hard seltzer category grew an impressive 155 percent, and Goldman Sachs forecasts U.S. retail sales will expand from approximately $4.1 billion last year to $30 billion by 2025, comprising roughly 25 percent of the total alcohol beverage sector.

The appeal of hard seltzers is shared among producers and consumers.

For producers, there is a relatively low barrier to entry. Beer makers, for example, have been able to launch hard seltzer products by utilizing much of their existing equipment infrastructure and supplier network, including ingredients, packaging and distribution providers.

Consumers are attracted to the health aspects of hard seltzer, especially compared to spirits. From Baby Boomers to Gen Z’ers, hard seltzers are finding favor with a broad range of adults who are drawn to lower calorie and carb beverages that are also gluten-free, vegan, sell equally well to men and women, and are enjoyable year-round.

Not surprisingly, the overwhelming growth of hard seltzers means the sector is becoming more crowded and competitive.

As hard seltzer producers look to retain and expand their market share, they are sharpening their focus on flavor as a way to stand out from the competition.

Simply speaking, hard seltzers are made with water, sugar, yeast and flavoring. Many hard seltzers use chemically derived extracts to achieve the desired flavor. However, an increasing number of producers are opting for real fruit purees, which expand the possibilities for new and creative flavor profiles.

When combined with various spices, herbs, and even flowers such as hibiscus, the possibilities are virtually endless. Moreover, the use of real fruit and other ingredients are key to addressing consumers’ demands for food and beverage products whose ingredients are more transparent and healthy.

In March, SLO Brew, Central California’s longest-standing craft brewery, introduced Cali-Squeeze, a hard seltzer crafted with real fruit puree—a feature that was important to both the company and it’s customers.

In addition to flavor, real fruit also gives the hard seltzer an opaque color, which can range from purple to red to pale yellow.

“Our customers have been asking for a hard seltzer and we wanted to blow their expectations out of the water,” said SLO Brew co-founder Rodney Cegelski in a press release.

SLO Brew is not the only company getting into the hard seltzer segment or expanding an existing line-up.

New Belgium, Braxton Brewing, Cape May, New Realm Brewing, Molson Coors and Bud Light are among those that are also unveiling new offerings this spring.

Read more


NFC Aseptic Purees and Juices vs. FC Aseptic Purees and Juices

Posted by Araza Purees on

Wondering the difference between NFC Aseptic Purees and Juices vs. FC Aseptic Purees and Juices: This blog highlights some of the differences between processed fruit ingredients that are “Not from Concentrate” (NFC) versus “From Concentrate” (FC) aseptic purees and juices.

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Wondering the difference between NFC Aseptic Purees and Juices vs. FC Aseptic Purees and Juices: This blog highlights some of the differences between processed fruit ingredients that are “Not from Concentrate” (NFC) versus “From Concentrate” (FC) aseptic purees and juices.

Read more


Understanding Aseptic Fruit Purees

Posted by Araza Purees on

Aseptic purees refers to a processing technique that takes perishable fruits and vegetables, and extends the shelf life by sufficiently eliminating harmful germs and filling it into a previously sterilized package, such as an aseptic bag, drum or bin/tote.  

In many ways, the concept is similar to canning food. Aseptic packaging uses more sophisticated processes and systems, but the three fundamental steps in order to achieve a shelf-stable product are essentially the same.   

Read more

Understanding Aseptic Fruit Purees

Posted by Araza Purees on

Aseptic purees refers to a processing technique that takes perishable fruits and vegetables, and extends the shelf life by sufficiently eliminating harmful germs and filling it into a previously sterilized package, such as an aseptic bag, drum or bin/tote.  

In many ways, the concept is similar to canning food. Aseptic packaging uses more sophisticated processes and systems, but the three fundamental steps in order to achieve a shelf-stable product are essentially the same.   

Read more