Innovation Insight: Aqua-Tine Homeopathic Nicotine Formula
With e-cigarettes experiencing a surge in popularity across the globe, Gama considers whether the time may be ripe for innovation in more traditional stop-smoking categories. This week’s focus is on Aqua-Tine Homeopathic Nicotine Formula and its new ‘beverage mix’ format of nicotine replacement.
Promoted as “a new alternative to traditional tobacco products including cigarettes, cigars, smokeless tobacco, as well as e-cigarettes”, Aqua-Tine is a stop-smoking aid “for situations and environments where an individual either cannot or chooses not to smoke”, according to company literature. Sold as a box of 40 tear-open tubes, the product comes as a liquid that can be mixed into “your beverage of choice” and is designed to deal with temporary nicotine cravings.
Perhaps somewhat ironically, the novelty of Aqua-Tine’s ‘beverage mix’ concept serves to highlight the relative paucity of stop-smoking aid innovation in recent times, particularly in regard to creative or appealing formats. Arguably, the limited number of new options in the category is one of the reasons that e-cigarettes have, by contrast, enjoyed such marked success among consumers looking to quit their smoking habit. Recent research from the charity Action on Smoking and Health reveals the extent of the e-cigarette popularity boom – in the UK, the number of e-cigarette users has tripled from 700,000 in 2012 to 2.1 million in 2014. Beyond merely a functional or ‘medicinal’ stop-smoking device, e-cigarettes have become an attractive and versatile lifestyle accessory in their own right, offering consumers myriad flavours and a wide range of stylish design and modern branding.
In the face of this challenge to its territory – and irrespective of any future restrictions placed on the use, sale or promotion of e-cigarettes, such as those recently mooted by the World Health Organisation – there may be lessons that traditional stop-smoking aids can draw from the success of e-cigarettes. New, customizable formats (such as Aqua-tine’s ‘beverage mix’ concept), a greater focus on lifestyle elements and design, a wider variety of appealing or on-trend flavour blends, and a renewed emphasis on proven, medicinal benefits are among the ways that traditional stop-smoking aids could look to counteract their e-cigarette rivals, while still tapping into that same demand for ‘healthy’ tobacco alternatives.