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Matcha powder stays fresh with cap-dispensing system

Beverage-bottle cap dispensing systems that keep powdered ingredients dry until the time of use have become a popular way to preserve the potency of some products.

Matcha NOW
Matcha NOW

Matcha NOW is one of the latest products to use this format, with a proprietary cap that holds 5 mL organic Japanese matcha, topping a 12-oz bottle of purified water.

Matcha NOW brand owner, Budda Teas of Carlsbad, CA, has been offering matcha tea, known for its health and antioxidant benefits, since 2010 in stick-pack and teabag formats. Wanting to give consumers a way to enjoy the health benefits of matcha on the go, Budda Teas recently began working on a RTD option.

“Once we started developing the formulation, we quickly discovered that matcha is difficult to work with and store in a bottle,” explains Budda Teas founder and CEO John Boyd. “The problem is matcha is a powder that does not dissolve in water, rather it disperses as a suspension. When matcha is mixed and sealed in a bottle, within a few minutes, it settles to the bottom of the bottle, and then within days, the product turns from a vibrant emerald green to an oxidized brown/green color. All of these things affected the flavor and appeal of the product and were problems we had to solve. Enter the cap! By putting matcha in the cap, we are able to preserve it fresh until time of consumption. This creates the best RTD matcha experience on the market.”

Boyd describes the supplier of the proprietary cap as “a large U.S. plastics company.” The closure is a two-piece assembly that, when snapped together using high pressure, creates a hermetically sealed storage space that keeps the matcha powder fresh for up to two years. To open the cap and release its contents, the consumer turns it counterclockwise, causing a plastic edge to cut open the bottom of the septum of the cap. “This allows the cap to open much like a trap door on a hinge,” explains Boyd.

The PET bottle is a custom shape, based on a stock bullet design from a proprietary supplier. Boyd says Budda Teas chose the structure because the company liked the simple, bullet-like shape and size, which fits nicely in the hand.

Matcha NOW was introduced in September 2016 in Sprouts Famers Markets and in natural and specialty supermarkets across the U.S. “Retailers have shown a lot of interest,” says Boyd. “This is a unique delivery system, and when combined with matcha, which is a trending healthy product, Budda Teas Matcha NOW is a great addition to a retailer’s product lineup. Consumers are intrigued with the technology and with the high quality of the ceremonial-grade matcha.”

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