By Lea Giandomenico
Mogu Mogu. This name means nothing to you ? However, teenagers love this drink from Thailand, based on nata de coco, which is drunk and eaten at the same time.
Because the word Mogu comes from the Japanese “to chew”: literally, it is therefore a drink to chew. And for good reason, at the same time as you drink a flashy colored beverage, mango, passion fruit, lychee, or even raspberry flavor, you eat small cubes of jelly coconut fermented, coconut natawhich float in the bottle.
Is the Mogu Mogu dethroning the bubble tea, this drink embellished with tapioca balls, straight from Taiwan, which has been all the rage for a few years? Maybe.
“We don’t usually find that in France”
“I always take mango, it’s so good! says Clément, 17, when the term Mogu Mogu is mentioned. And Fatema, 21, a fan of the same type of Mogu Mogu, adds: “I too have been buying the same perfume every time, for several years now. »
Clément, a high school student, says that he and his “group of friends” love the drink: “For three months, we have been buying it very regularly at the Carrefour next to the school. As soon as we have a little pocket money, it goes partly in there”he smiles.
But why did young people set their sights on this strange beverage from the neighboring continent? “Because it’s very innovative and very new as a product”, tries to explain to d’actu.fr Starwell’s Chief Operating Officer. This French distributor of beverages and various food products has been selling Mogu Mogu for four years.
We don’t usually have that in France, that’s what we like! The hyper particular side, a little exotic. It’s a very different drink from the others, and the consistency is strange but funny, you drink and you eat at the same time!
At Starwell, we see an increase in the volume of this product every year, “but it has always been very popular”, explains the operational director of Starwell.
Like all Asian products, like bubble tea or aloe vera, “and the catering offer from Asia in general, with this enthusiasm for sushi, poke bowls, fried noodles and company”, continues the company.
Chewable drinks are one of the products which, in Asia, are very common, with them it is ancestral. But for us Europeans, it’s new, and young people especially like what’s new and exotic.
Etienne Jacoté, owner of the site mogu-drinks.co.ukreseller of Mogu Mogu, joined by news.fr, attests: “It’s one of the rare drinks like that on the market, so it’s starting to become more popular, and not just among young people: I even supply an Ehpad in Monaco! »
“I love the very particular texture”
Fans of Thai juice are therefore formal: it is largely consistency which pleases them. “I like the very particular texture of the coconut cubes, I love it when there are large pieces in the juice, for example,” says Fatema, a student in Belgium.
And the company Starwell to specify that the interest of such a product, it is largely the surprising side. “Anything coconut-based is very popular right now,” adds the brand.
We all love it because we have a lot of tastes to choose from too I think.
And Etienne Jacoté confirms: “We offer 14 flavors in all, and we always want to try a new perfume! “, he exclaims.
For a little less than two euros, therefore, middle and high school students and students can buy their favorite drink in supermarkets, whereas it was previously confined to Asian supermarkets. The trend has even won over social networks: on tiktokteens have fun trying out different flavors and giving them a score out of 10.
When we walk on Twitter however, opinions are divided: if some twittos confirm to love the drink with the attractive packaging, others do not understand the craze.
Sugar and preservatives
So, good or not good? To get to the bottom of it, head to the local Super U: a bottle of passion-flavoured Mogu Mogu under my arm, I try my hand at the trend, backwards. The first sip leaves an unpleasant impression of drink in the mouth. too sweet, and very chemical. Difficult to find the flavor of passion fruit.
And the little jelly bits of nata de coco feel weird under the tongue. The verdict falls: yuck. And yet, the bottle placed next to my computer will not end up being completely drunk: the Mogu Mogu has a taste of “come back. The high concentration of sugar, no doubt, the secret to making teenagers addicted.
And indeed, when we look at the label of the bottle, we quickly become disillusioned. The composition Mogu Mogu? Water, lots of sugar, nata de coco (those famous cubes of fermented coconut jelly), juice from concentrate, as well as coloring and preservatives. An explosive cocktail, therefore, which does not seem without risk to health, when the beverage is consumed in large quantities.
Almost as sweet as coke
“This drink is not fruit juice, as she tries to make it out to be, but a sodawith far too much sugar, hidden behind the names of sucrose and fructose, and no fruit at all in it, but many aromas”, explains Camille Dorioz, campaign manager at Foodwatch France, contacted by news.fr.
For him, one of the reasons for this craze actually comes from the high sugar content: “The Mogu Mogu is almost as sweet as coke. »
However, it is well known that sugar creates an addiction in humans. “And all the more among young people,” says Camille Dorioz.
In fact, our body is very used to eating sweet things, so when it tests these kinds of products, it is this habit and this consistency of having a sweet taste everywhere that makes you want to come back to them.
According to him, this attraction for this drink is all the more worrying since the sugars present in the bottle are free sugars, “those which must be avoided because they are the worst for the health”, he specifies.
A matter of measurement
For its part, the Starwell company is well aware high in sugar in these drinks, but refuses to claim to pass for a fruit juice. “We sell a fruit drink, not a pure juice, so inevitably, there is sugar in the bottle, which comes partly from the natural sugar of the fruits, but also from added sugar, of course. »
For the operational director of Starwell, “sugar is not good for your health if you don’t have a healthy lifestyle on the side, that you don’t play sports. Everything is a health risk if we consume too much of it in the end, it is a matter of measurement : as with everything, do not abuse this fun drink“comments Starwell.
The company also explains that it only markets small bottles to limit the risks, precisely, and excessive consumption.
We are also working to develop formulas with less conventional sugar, probably with sweeteners.
On the French beverage site, mogu-boissons.fr, it is mentioned that the beverage exotic and refreshingcontains “dietary fibre”, is low in “cholesterol and calorie content”, and “contributes to good digestion”.
But its sugar level dethrones the rest. “You shouldn’t drink a liter of it, that’s for sure. If you drink a bottle from time to time, it’s fine, and it’s still less sweet than a coke,” comments Etienne Jacoté.
0 points from Yuka
Scanned on Yuka appwhich provides information on food and cosmetic products, the Mogu Mogu nevertheless displays the poor score of 0/100. “Presence of risky additives, too caloric, too sweet”, specifies the application.
The additive in question is none other than sodium benzoate, a preservative that can increase hypersensitivity and cause allergic reactions (hives, gastrointestinal disorders, effects on the nervous system, etc.). “It is also suspected of promoting hyperactivity and attention deficit disorders in children,” says Yuka.
A product that should be monitored if the trend is gaining momentum. “We are not saying that we have to stop consuming it, but rather drink it in moderation, do not buy it every day, or drink the bottle all at once”, tempers Camille Dorioz on the side of Foodwatch. “But it’s a drink that can have a pernicious side,” he concludes.
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