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Parents want their children to drink plenty of plain water and want to limit their sugar intake. But how to convince children that the healthy option is also the fun option? WaWaah Water to the rescue! This sugar-free, tasty and fun drink with added vitamins is a healthy option for parents who try to limit the sugar intake of their children.

WaWaah Water: a drink for kids that’s healthy, tasty and fun

1 in 3 kids do not drink enough water

More than 20% of the children in Belgium drink 3 soft drinks a day and 33% do not drink enough water. Those were the shocking conclusions of the market research carried out by three fathers of young children for their MBA at the Antwerp Management School. They decided to take matters into their own hands and developed WaWaah Water: a sugar-free drink that’s very tasty and fun for kids, thanks to the little monsters drawn by their very own children on the packaging. The whole styling is customized for and by kids.

Philippe Deben, co-founder and Chief Monster Officer, is the one pulling the strings today. His experience at the brewery AB InBev and the coffee company Douwe Egberts provided him with the knowledge and the network to make WaWaah Water into a success. “Right at the launch in June 2021, we were able to secure a contract with distributor PAB Benelux, who supported us tremendously with the marketing. Very soon, WaWaah Water was on the shelves of toys retailer FUN and the food- and garden retailer AVEVE. But our ambitions reach much further.”

Added goodness ...

Philippe: “WaWaah Water is targeted at 3- to 7-year-old kids. During the development of the drink, we worked closely with a children’s dietician. She highlighted certain vitamin deficiencies in young children: B5 for the digestion, B12 for concentration and memory, and C for the immune system. So, we added these to the beverage to make it extra healthy.” 

“Good to know: B5, B12 and C are water-soluble vitamins, which means that you can’t overdose them. The excess just naturally leaves the body. This is also why we didn’t add vitamin D, which is a fat-soluble vitamin. That makes it safe for children to drink WaWaah Water all day long. That said, we want to be an option for parents who try to limit the sugar intake of their children, not an alternative to water. With WaWaah Water, parents can give their children a little ‘extra’ without remorse.”


Water-soluble vs fat-soluble vitamins

Water-soluble vitamins (the eight B-vitamins and vitamin C) leave the body via urine and don’t accumulate in the body. Fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K) on the contrary, are easily stored in the body’s tissues. Because they can accumulate, they are more likely to lead to toxicity when taken in excess.


 

… without the bad

WaWaah Water doesn’t contain any added sugar or preservatives. It’s really just water with two added flavors: apple or strawberry. These are strictly natural flavorings obtained by adding apple (3,7%) or strawberry (1,5%) juice. This juice adds up to less than 1% of the total sugar content. 

“We did a lot of testing on our own children and their friends at birthday parties, and apple and strawberry were the two favorites,” says Philippe Deben. “They wanted a touch of extra sweetness, however, which we achieved by adding a little stevia, a natural sweetener that has no influence on the blood sugar level.”

From 1L bottles to 200ML bricks

“We started with 1L bottles labeled by hand. We already sold 7,000 of those via our web shop, which was a great ‘retail laboratory’, with direct feedback from the customers. They wanted a solution for drinks on the go and we gave them just that, by producing 200ml bricks – 100% recyclable and made of 100% renewable materials. That size makes it ideal for schools and sports clubs as well. We rely on a professional partner for the production and the filling. That way, food safety is guaranteed, but we can also scale up the production seamlessly when demand goes up.”

Great expectations

“We realized that we had something unique when our first tests through our web shop and the Belgian retail partners went extremely well. That’s when we decided to go all the way and market the product all over Europe. In five years from now, we want to be the European reference in children’s drinks. To accomplish that, we want to scale up distribution very quickly and are looking for good retail partners to do that. We are already developing new tastes – they’re still a secret! – and we’re looking at older target groups with a new product as well. But first, we want to do this completely right.”

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