Stowmarket couple Jason and Amanda Freeman have big ambitions for natural energy drink Youth Energy
- Credit: Archant
A Suffolk couple who spent 10 years working in the health products sector in America have launched their own energy drink brand.
Youth Energy aims to fill what Jason Freeman and his wife Amanda believe is a gap in the market for a “natural” energy drink, free from all artificial ingredients.
And this, says Jason, has also offered an opportunity to develop a product which provides a sustained boost to energy rather than just delivering a quick “high” which is then followed by a “low” as the initial hit wears off.
“Besides applying our own knowledge of ingredients, we worked with a doctor in Germany to formulate the product and with a flavouring house, eventually settling on an apple-based flavour,” says Jason.
Besides apple juice, which is naturally rich in vitamins, other ingredients including ginseng root, natural caffeine, artichoke leaves, ginko leaves, yerba mate and fructose. Between them, these are said to offer a sustained boost to energy, and to support feelings of euphoria and calmness.
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Markets being targeted include professional sports people and football club nutritionists.
The development process lasted around 18 months in all, with Youth Energy being launched on the market last August. They initially focused on selling within East Anglia but also recently launched on Amazon through its Vendor Central programme.
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The Stowmarket-based business now also employs two other people, one in marketing and accounts and the other running an online store. The manufacturing operation has been outsourced to a producer in Germany and distribution is via a managed warehouse facility.
As a result, the drink is not eligible for promotion within East Anglia under major retailers’ local sourcing initiatives, but the couple’s ambitions are, in any case, far wider.
Their aim is to sell one million units in the first 12 months of trading, an ambition which has just received a major boost in the form of a distribution agreement in India alongside approval from the FSSAI, the Indian government’s equivalent of the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) in the United States.
They have also received an approach fom Dubai and, down the road, are looking at the “big one” - the US.
“We launch in India in March,” adds Jason. “This is very exciting particularly when you consider India has a population of a billion people.”