Review: Halfday Tea Tonic
Covers Products: Green Tea with Honey & Ginseng, Lemon Black Tea, Peach Green Tea
Halfday Tea Tonic is a new line of low sugar, ready-to-drink teas that offer classic iced tea flavor along with added plant based fiber. The product line currently features three core flavors packaged in 12 ounce cans, including Peach Green Tea, Green Tea with Honey & Ginseng, and Lemon Black Tea..
The products are sweetened with agave inulin (also a source of fiber), apple juice concentrate and stevia, while the addition of Jerusalem artichoke inulin provides the primary source of fiber content. With 35-40 calories per can and 3-4 grams of sugar per can, Halfday’s teas are in a good spot even before considering their functionality.
When it comes to flavor, all three varieties of Halfday are very drinkable and deliver on the promise of being just like a classic RTD iced tea. They definitely skew a bit more towards the sweet side, rather than the actual tea itself, but not too much. You definitely don’t have to be a serious tea drinker to enjoy these products and we appreciate that they’ve started with flavors that are familiar within the category.
Another thing that’s really nice about this product is that you cannot taste the stevia. It’s pretty close to tasting like a full calorie product and there isn’t even so much as a note at the drink’s finish.
The same can be said about the added fiber, although unlike the stevia, we weren’t expecting this to impact the taste. Still, it’s nice to have a beverage where the added benefits are integrating seamlessly into the taste.
As for the packaging, the 12 ounce can utilizes a shrink sleeve label with a glossy finish. The three labels follow the same hierarchy with the prime label real estate dedicated to the Halfday Tea Tonic logo (a cloud with text inside of it) and three lines that state the flavor name, the secondary flavors, and the sugar and fiber content (along with a fruit image).
There’s also a simple functional callout around the can’s neck that states “good for your gut!” This is, aside from the callout for 8 grams of fiber, the only mention of this nutritional benefit. Fortunately, fiber is something that doesn’t need too much of an explanation so this should be sufficient.
Keeping this light also helps Halfday have an appealing and approachable look to it. The design doesn’t look overly serious or functional, which we think is a good thing when it comes to consumers perceiving this as a product that will taste good.
The only thing that feels a little off for us is calling this a “tea tonic.” This will, at least for some consumers, create confusion over whether this product is still or sparkling. From our perspective, we’d use this as an opportunity to help come up with a better product descriptor -- something that makes it a bit more clear that this is an RTD tea product.
In the end, we think that Halfday has done a great job with their initial product lineup. They’ve successfully recreated classic RTD iced tea flavors with lower sugar, lower calories and the added benefits of fiber -- all wrapped up with a fun looking brand. We definitely see some opportunity for Halfday, as well as others, to carve out a space from RTD tea much the same way that prebiotic brands have done in the CSD space.