Low and no alcohol: The “spirit” market and functional ingredients

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44 min listen
AUTHOR: Anthony Zahra

In this edition of the Table Talk podcast, we’re looking at the role of functional ingredients in low and no alcohol drinks.

Stefan Gates is joined by Dash Lilley, co-founder of Three Spirit, and David Begg, co-founder of Real Kombucha.

They discuss ingredients which lift the mood, as well as providing health benefits on the side. Functional ingredients have been one of the stories of the last few years, but the question is – can they also provide the beguiling and beautiful tastes to match the best in the sector?

Learn more about the low and no alcohol market in our Masterclass series

How to survive and thrive in the no/low alcohol market

26 May 2022

Find out more

Low and no alcohol drinks on UK market – how to navigate the complexity of product information regulations

28 June 2022

Find out more


In this episode, Stefan, Dash and David explain what we mean by functional ingredients, debate what needs to happen to move the sector forward, and answer the question: Does the lo and no alcohol sector still have an innovative, entrepreneurial feel – or is it just big business now?

Dash Lilley – Co-Founder and Product Manager, Three Spirit

Dash leads product at Three Spirit. Before Three Spirit, he founded several wellness-focused beverage brands including CocoFace and Champatea.

He spends a lot of his time experimenting with plants and thinking about the future of drinking and the use of innovative ingredients.

There’s unquestionable magic about discovering new ingredients. Finding the next new thing often involves looking back into the past to see what people have used traditionally.

Three Spirit has been a different challenge as we’ve tried to create a product that is about pleasure and fun. Something which is all about having fun and socialising, to help lose inhibitions and make connections with others in a space that has been dominated by alcohol.

It’s time we had choices.”

David Begg – Founder, Real Kombucha

David Begg is a serial entrepreneur and founder of several well known consumer brands such as Tom Dixon, Clippings.com and Active Hotels (now booking.com).

He is a passionate grower, forager, cook and general explorer of food and flavour.

But it was (virtually) quitting alcohol a few years back that led to his obsession with fermenting kombucha as an alternative to his previously beloved wine and beer and the founding of Real Kombucha.

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