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03 : 05 : 19 : Weekly Debrief

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3 May 2019

Author: The Future Laboratory

Image: Survival in the digital age, Daily Paper


This week: Non-alcoholic aperitifs, cereal for grown-ups, Ireland's better connectivity, an Alexa skill for therapy and cleaning products in tablet form.

Æcorn Aperitifs

1. Seedlip launches sister brand of non-alcoholic aperitifs

UK – Æcorn Aperitifs is a new range of non-alcoholic aperitifs created to be paired with food and stimulate the appetite.

Designed to be served as a spritz or within a variety of no-or low-alcohol cocktails, the range launches with three varietals: Dry, Bitter and Aromatic. Each is made from Pinot Noir, Meunier and Chardonnay grapes grown in England, which are pressed early and blended with herbs, roots and bitter botanicals.

‘We are thrilled to be following in Seedlip’s footsteps and breaking new ground in the category they created,’ says Claire Warner, managing director of Æcorn Aperitifs. ‘Since Seedlip’s launch, the world of non-alcoholic has shown itself to be dynamic and exciting, and we hope that the introduction of Æcorn Aperitifs will now give everyone who is not drinking, a seat at the table.’

For more on how innovators are rethinking the non-alcoholic category, read our Evening Waters microtrend.

Magic Spoon

2. Magic Spoon reinvents cereal for adults

US – The start-up is disrupting the breakfast category with a range of grain-free, high-protein cereals in child-like flavours.

With its playful branding and nostalgic feel, Magic Spoon is targeting health-conscious consumers for whom cereal was a favourite childhood treat. The product finds a new middle ground between high-sugar cereals and their bland but healthy counterparts. ‘We looked at the current market and noticed that most 'healthy' breakfast options were really sleepy and dull,’ say the brand’s founders, Gabi Lewis and Greg Sewitz.

Launching with four flavours (fruity, cinnamon, frosted and cocoa), the brand uses a combination of monk fruit, stevia and allulose instead of sugar, and a blend of whey and milk proteins to boost protein content. Its cereals will initially only be available to purchase online, with a monthly subscription costing £27 ($35, €31).

Magic Spoon is not the only brand creating healthy but indulgent product types. Chobani recently launched a line of healthy yoghurts for children in a variety of candy-inspired flavours.

The Island, Three Business

3. Three brings hyper-connectivity to rural Arranmore

Ireland – The mobile network has partnered with the remote island of Arranmore to transform its residents' lifestyles through better connectivity.

Until now, Arranmore’s lack of connectivity has restricted societal and economic growth. The partnership with Three will help its community of 469 people to create new business and employment opportunities. The initiative is also part of the island’s efforts to encourage its diaspora to consider returning home.

Building on Arranmore Business Council’s work to establish Ireland’s first offshore digital hub, and facilitate an effective remote working environment, Three has provided fast connectivity and bandwidth, as well as fitting-out the interior of the hub and installing new hardware. ‘We believe this partnership will go a long way in helping to future-proof Arranmore and will make the island sustainable for the next generation,’ says Seamus Bonner, a representative of Arranmore Business Council.

To discover more ways the internet is empowering rural communities, read our debrief of the fifth annual IAM Weekend.

4. The Difference is an Alexa skill for on-demand therapy

US – The service uses Amazon’s Alexa to make on-demand therapy more accessible for all.

Users who subscribe to The Difference, which starts at $50 (£38, €45) for a 30-minute session and goes up to $200 (£154, €178) a month for three hours with a dedicated therapist, can request a therapy session through their Alexa device.

After registering and receiving a PIN code, users simply state, 'Alexa, open The Difference,'. After sharing their pin, they are connected with a therapist in under 30 minutes, who will call them on their mobile phone. While customers wait to be connected, they can listen to a guided meditation. The Difference aims to merge psychology with technology, creating a more accessible way to receive therapy on-demand when it’s needed most.

As the number of people diagnosed with depression and anxiety rises, there is an opportunity for brands to think laterally about how to provide people with access to the support they need and rethink the therapy experience for the next generation.

The Difference
Blueland, US

5. Blueland creates cleaning products in tablet form

New York – A new direct-to-consumer brand has launched with a range of cleaning products that eliminate the need for single-use plastic packaging.

Sold as a refillable system, Blueland’s Clean Up Kit includes three reusable bottles and three different cleaning tablets for multi-surface, glass and mirror, and bathroom usage. The tablets can be dissolved in water to create non-toxic household cleaners and will retail for £1.50 ($2, €1.80) per refill. In future, the company also plans to release other sustainable cleaning and personal care products.

‘When people hear eco-friendly, they assume the products will be less effective, more expensive and more work,’ says Sarah Paiji Yoo, CEO and co-founder of Blueland. ‘We're flipping this on its head with cutting-edge formulas, readily biodegradable packaging, and money-saving $2 refill tablets.’ In a similar vein, our Home Cleaning Market explores design-led, eco-friendly start-ups who are transforming the image of household cleaning.



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