I was contacted by a marketing manager at Lassonde, a Canadian conglomerate that sells a number of well-known brands of juices, asking if he could send me a new product. I told him sure, but was clear that there was no onus on me to blog about it, or to give it a good review.Well, I’ve now had all six bottles: three teas, three fruit-flavoured beverages.
Honestly? I can’t think of a single reason to buy these beverages. The tea flavour (black, white, and green teas) was very muted. They need to be steeping their teas more. The most strongly flavoured tea was the pomegranate green tea, which did taste of pomegranate (moreso than of tea).
For all three of them, sweetness overwhelmed the flavours. The teas are flavoured with organic cane sugar (about 40 grams per 473ml bottle, which is supposed to be almost two servings). To my mind, that’s a lot of sugar, organic or not.
The organic designation comes from an American company, Quality Assurance International, which has approval from the US FDA to certify products as organic. I emailed Lassonde to ask why the products don’t have Canadian certification; to this date, I haven’t received an answer.The three fruit “beverages”:
- “Take it easy” Red Orange Guava Hibiscus
- “Live calm” Lemon Honey Aloe
- “Peak [sic] Your Senses” Strawberry Dragon Fruit Ginseng”
Suffered similarly from being overly sweet. The beverages were sweetened with beet or chicory syrup instead of cane sugar. As with the teas, sugar was ingredient #2, right after water. The fruit flavours were muted — strawberry came through most strongly — and I think one thing that really appalled me is that the predominant fruit juice seems to be apple juice, which is probably considered mostly neutral in fruit flavours, but adds more sweetness.
For the Red Orange Guava Hibiscus beverage, the fruit juice list is: concentrated (lemon, apple, blood orange) juices, natural hibiscus, guava, and other fruit flavours, citrus pectin
For Lemon Honey Aloe, it’s: concentrated (lemon, apple) juices, natural fruit flavours and honey, aloe vera gel, citrus pectin
For Strawberry Dragon Fruit Ginseng, it’s: concentrated (lemon, apple, elderberry, strawberry) juices, natural dragon fruit and other fruit flavours, ginseng extract).
Just buy some fruit juice and dilute it if you want a weak beverage. I don’t recommend buying these beverages, which don’t seem to be offering much over kool-aid.