Last Updated: 6/20/2012 9:45 AM
Despite being labeled as a dietary supplement, INGO is simply a flavored water. And as far as flavored waters go, it’s quite simple and enjoyable, with water, cucumber juice, lemon juice, natural flavors, and ginger powder making up the entire ingredient list. The use of juice as opposed to flavor or essences makes a big difference; there's a very natural cucumber and lemon flavor found in this drink. In fact, we think it’s very close to what you’d get if you made this at home. However, we don’t taste the ginger or mint, which are perhaps only there for functional purposes. Speaking of functionality, INGO is being positioned as a drink that helps hydrate and detox, with the label comparing itself to coconut water and sports drinks (INGO lacks electrolytes, so perhaps those kinds of drinks are not the best thing for this product to be comparing against on the label). Visually, INGO made us expect to find something different in the bottle. The name INGO sounds overly functional, which isn’t helped by prime placement of “dietary supplement” (the back of the label refers to it as a beverage -- it can’t be both by FDA standards) and a zero calorie badge on the front of the label. While some of this just seems like technical missteps or an effort to be overly cautious, repositioning this so that it’s primarily a refreshment beverage and adding additional SKUs would likely make this product have more market potential (especially since what’s inside the bottle is quite good). However, as it stands right now, the overly functional branding seems at odds with the rest of the product to the point where it would be easy to simply glance over INGO when scanning the cooler. Overall, a nice concept and really well done flavor, but the packaging and positioning need work.