What you might expect to taste in your rendang or biryani has been deployed into our coffee: turmeric is the latest flavor to hit Starbucks, and indeed many other coffee shops in the UK.

Starbucks claims that turmeric “is one of the latest trends” and will bring a “new twist” to the common latte. Despite the novelty of offering this golden-colored beverage, Starbucks have successfully acknowledged the various anti-inflammatory and medicinal properties of turmeric. This is part of Starbucks’ strategy to provide healthy alternatives and target an audience that demands a drink that delivers an extra energy boost and slight spice.

Consumers have been growing more health conscious thanks to a plethora of information available from the click of a button. According to GlobalData’s 2017 Consumer Survey, half of UK residents (50%) perceive turmeric as having a positive impact on their health. Similarly, nearly one fifth (19%) of 18-24 year olds globally are concerned about depression and actively buying products which address this concern.

It is uncertain whether turmeric does supply all the healthy properties people keep claiming. In addition, researchers have questioned the body’s ability to absorb the spice, thus benefits may not apply when consumed. Nonetheless, the apparent health benefits associated with turmeric – proven or otherwise – will appeal to the large proportion of health conscious consumers here in the UK.

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