13th December 2016
Catering students from the Technical Skills Academy in Barking will see their fizzy drink creation hit the shelves of local shops next year.
The students have been taking part in a drinks-making project called 'Molecular Fizz'; since October, they’ve been involved in workshops run by local drinks-making enterprise Company Drinks.
The aim of the ‘Molecular Fizz' project is to create all-new ranges of Barking and Dagenham picked and made sodas, developed in partnership with local young people.
With help from an expert in taste and flavour, using interactive, lab-based experiments, the students have been exploring the science of flavour and putting their taste buds to the test. Cam Jarvis of Company Drinks explains: “We encouraged them to pick and mix their own ingredients, to extract flavour and to brand and market their creations to the public, ensuring that they've been involved in every stage of the process.”
After weeks of tasting, picking, mixing, extracting, fizzing and branding, the students voted on a final pair of Barking and Dagenham flavour combinations, which they put to the test at a pop-up drinks stall at the Technical Skills Academy on Friday 9th December.
The students split into two teams and went head to head with their flavour combinations: Grape Licious, a blend of Kent grapes and blackcurrant VS Rapple Fizz, a mixture of Barking and Dagenham apples and rosehip, which the students picked themselves, as part of the project.
Angel Smith, 17 from Beckton headed up the Rapple Fizz team and Gemma Naidoo, 17 from Barking headed up the Grape Licious team.
Fellow students, teachers and members of the public were asked to try the two new sodas and to vote for their favourite flavour and brand.
“It was looking close for a while,” says Cam, “but eventually team Rapple Fizz emerged as clear winners.”
In 2017 Rapple Fizz will become one of Company Drinks' next products, and having seen their creation being processed and bottled, packaged and distributed, the students will even help choose where the drinks will go on sale in the borough.
Barking and Dagenham-based Company Drinks works with schools, colleges, libraries, parks and recreation centres to provide a year-round programme of workshops, drinks labs, picking trips and reminiscing sessions, for local residents of all ages.
The Molecular Fizz workshop series is being delivered by Company Drinks and the students of the Technical Skills Academy at Barking & Dagenham College, with Square Root London and An Endless Supply, and is supported by the Wellcome Trust.