The sweet field in the flavors business has been defined as including: soft drinks alcoholic beverages chocolate, flour and sugar confectionery ice cream chewing gum.
None of the above are the essentials of life, but this makes them no less desirable. Indeed, we may say that they are the stuff of La Dolce Vita, the sweet life. Aroma chemicals for sweet flavors have been available since the discovery of vanillin and the simple esters, but the ever-increasing sophistication of the consumer puts constant demands on the flavorist and the producers of aroma chemicals. In recent years particular areas of interest have included:
• Exotic and “fantasy” flavors; for example, tropical fruit flavors for soft drinks.
• Low-fat and low-calorie products for consumers wanting a full flavor without fat and sugar.
• Low-in-fruit-acids drinks; such as soft drinks, usually for children, which lack the high acidity of traditional juice-based drinks (such as citrus and blackcurrant drinks), and are aimed at the dental health market.
• Flavored waters; usually mineral waters with a fruit flavor lacking sugar or sweeteners.
• Alcoholic drinks with “soft” flavors; the so-called “Alcopops”. Simple alcoholic lemonade-type drinks were popular in Britain in the mid-90’s, but this led to questions on the ethics of marketing a drink which could target a very young market. This has led to more sophisticated “adult” flavors in these drinks.