Glass of tasty orange cocktail on tray


esarom is a supplier of flavours and ingredients for the food and beverage industry. Their product portfolio ranges from bases, flavours, emulsions, extracts, destillates, concentrates, to colourings and additives. 

Esarom has got long-lasting experience for already more than 60 years now which is driven by the passion for the craftmanship of creating unique taste experiences.

Interview with Michael Kornberger, Managing Director at esarom.

Easy Engineering: What are the main areas of activity of the company?

Michael Kornberger: Main focus is to create individual solutions for producers of beverages, confectionery and ice cream innovations. At this point we’re constantly monitoring the latest market trends in order to deliver what consumers demand.

Meeting the highest standards in food safety and hygiene in Austria, we’re exporting and operating in 35 different countries.

E.E: What’s the news about new products?

M.K: We’re currently expanding one of our production facilities with a new powder mixing plant. By the end of summer, we’ll be able to triple capacities in producing active ingredients such as powder compounds, stabilizers and flavours. 

We’ve decided to do so because it is predicted that energy drinks will grow by 7% per year till 2028 worldwide – which has the highest growth rate within the non-alcoholic beverage category. Our country is famous for the success story of energy drinks and its ingredients made in Austria are very popular around the globe. We are already developing a high amount of individual energy drink recipes every year – flavour and agent blends are key ingredients. So the next logical step was to enlarge the production volume of our caffeine vitamin agent blends in order to serve the growing energy drink market.

E.E: What are the ranges of products?

M.K: Our portfolio of flavours and ingredients covers categories such as non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages, confectionery, pastry products, ice cream, dairy products as well as products for special needs (e.g. kosher, halal, vegan and – if needed, in organic quality).

E.E: At what stage is the market where you are currently active?

M.K: In all the markets we are active we see opportunities to grow. And we see that the innovative power of food and beverage producers is increasing and we can offer substantial support in this matter – so we are looking forward to a prosperous future.

Also, the accessibility of particular raw materials has been becoming better in the recent months. Nevertheless, I’d love to see more security and less volatility along the global supply chain.

E.E: What can you tell us about market trends?

M.K: Functional foods and drinks have become indispensable – but the taste has to be. Similar to the large amounts of immune system boosting products being launched in the past, there is a growing demand for products that support cognitive performance or intestinal health, among other things.

Besides of that, reducing sugar within all categories is still a thing. Here are two crucial things:

  • First, we’re constantly adapting recipes in product development if necessary. And second,
  • we stay up to date in terms of sweetening alternatives including its accessibility.
  • But the same applies here: The product’s taste has to be convincing.

E.E: What are the most innovative products marketed?

M.K: The community of gamers has become such a big target group. In fact, 2.7 billion people are part of the gaming universe. To set that in context, we’ve got 8 billion people living on planet earth. So, we combined this trend with the increasing demand for foods with added benefits: As a result, our teams created several concepts for this particular target group – here are some examples:

Energy drinks with natural caffeine and ingredients contributing to normal mental performance, using popular flavours within the community.

The “gamer gums” especially created for the individual needs of gamers. 

E.E: What estimations do you have for 2023?

M.K: Creative taste experiences receive even more attention. Moving on from soda with classic lemon to exciting thirst quencher reminding of limoncello or lemon cake. People want to indulge themselves. And ideally do something good for themselves and the environment.

I’d like to mention here that lemon is esarom’s flavour of the year: Its distinctive taste profile can be used in numerous variations, so we dedicated 2023 to this incredible yellow fruit.

Anyway, the high level of health awareness results in an even larger selection of “Better for me” products: Immune boosters, increased well-being, more power, etc. With the latter product promise, we expect an increase in caffeine RTDs focusing natural caffeine sources, e.g. guarana, mate, cascara or the green coffee bean.