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Make Your own Water Enhancers Like Kraft MiO

Water is arguably the most important thing you put in your body – but it certainly isn’t always the most exciting. For the first time, Kraft Foods hopes to change that with a new product that appeals to consumers’ desires to customize their food and beverage: a liquid water enhancer.

MiO, which means “mine” in Italian, is a a zero-calorie, concentrated line of liquid flavorings sold in sleek bottles that contain approximately 24 servings and retail for the suggested price of $3.99. Flavor offerings include Berry Pomegranate and Strawberry Watermelon.

“This is the next big thing,” says Roxanne Bernstein, director of the brand told USA Today. “It’s an entirely new category.”

While there are certainly other water enhancers on store shelves, such as Crystal Light, MiO is different from its successors in that all similar products are powders. MiO is a concentrated liquid packaged in tiny droplet-shaped containers that some have compared to eye drop bottles.

Some reports have stated that  MiO, an idea that was conceived at an employee brainstorming summit, is expected to become popular among women, diabetics, dieters and 18-34 year olds who enjoy personalizing their food and beverages. Nonetheless, some experts have raised concerns about the artificial dyes, colors and sweeteners.

“How many different ways do consumers need to change a plain bottle of water?” Lynn Dornblaser, new products guru at Mintel, told USA Today.

If you’re interested in adding some extra flavor to your water but resistant to the artificial chemicals, such as red 40 and blue 1, we like to flavor water with a few of these healthy and natural methods:

  • Add a splash of real fruit juice to your H2O. Love pomegranate? Instead of pomegranate flavoring, opt for a splash of real fruit juice for a lot of flavor and few calories.
  • Slice one whole cucumber and one lime. Place in the bottom of a pitcher and fill with water. You’ll have a zero-calorie refreshing beverage at your fingertips anytime.
  • Freeze blueberries or raspberries in an ice cube tray. When your ice melts, you’ll be left with a fruity treat to enhance the flavor of your water.
  • Experiment with homemade syrups. In a saucepan, bring one part water and one part sugar to a rolling boil. Add your favorite flavoring, such as citrus zest or vanilla bean. Boil, stirring consistently until sugar is dissolved. Store covered in the refrigerator and use sparingly to add flavor to your water.

April 18th, 2011

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