The Future Beyond Alcohol

“This isn’t about not drinking, this is about having a choice.” Spiritless, 2021

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George Barton | October 27, 2021
Mind

- 5 minute read -

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Picture this:

It’s 2030 and you’re standing by the side of the stage at a music festival, sipping a magic mushroom cocktail feeling 100% in control. What looks like a drink is your key to euphoria - without the trip. This is the new night out.

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Sip your drink.
Shift your mood.

It’s already happening—right now. Beyond alcohol, there’s an entire world of new active ingredients finding their place in consumables, from CBD, THC and ashwaghanda of today to more long-term, psychoactive substances of tomorrow like psilocybin (magic mushrooms) and MDMA.

Consumer behavior is rapidly changing, with Gen Z leading the charge. Drinking 20% less than the generations before them, 75% say they want to feel in control of all aspects of their life at all times - not surprising considering the global rise in cases of depression and anxiety and a shift towards no & low alcohol products.


Whatever your needs, the drinks of the future will enable you to shift your mood in an instant, giving you full control to enhance your experience.

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Active Ingredients

In a future where brands and consumers can curate moods for any occasion, could you simply select your drink of choice based on the mood and experience you want to have?

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It's Beyond Alcohol

Here we take a look at the three major groups of actives that are giving consumers more choices, beyond alcohol...

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Nootropics


DEFINITION
Aka Smart Drugs. They're drugs, supplements, and other substances that help to improve brain function.

BENEFITS
From improving memory to creativity and enhancing motivation. They can also help mood management by relieving stress and increasing confidence and happiness.

CONTROL MOOD AND SLEEP
L-Trytophan: An amino acid that plays a part in creating serotonin

DECREASE ANXIETY
GABA: It blocks certain brain signals and decreases activity in your nervous system. Potential for alcohol replacement.

FEEL RELAXED, BUT NOT TIRED
L-Theanine: Has positive effects on both the mental & physical symptoms of stress.

IMPROVE SLEEP AND RESET YOUR CLOCK
Melatonin: A hormone that your brain produces in response to darkness.

ENHANCE MEMORY AND FOCUS
Apoaequorin: Jellyfish protein used for neuroprotective activity.

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Adaptogens


DEFINITION
Sub-category of nootropics which are non-toxic plants, herbs & roots with ancient healing traditions. They can be eaten in a meal, as supplements or brewed as tea.

BENEFITS
Can help your body adjust to physical, chemical, or biological stress; enabling your body to return to a balanced state called "homeostasis."

PROMOTE HEALING AND BUILD MUSCLE
Moringa: Has 7 times more vitamin C than oranges and 15 times more potassium than bananas. It also has calcium, protein, iron, and amino acids.

IMPROVE MEMORY AND REDUCE ANXIETY
Bacopa: Used by Ayurvedic medical practitioners for centuries.

MANAGE MOOD
Kava: Pacific Island ritual drug used as a sedative. Variety of uses but seen as having potential to help manage the world’s mood.

IMPROVE MOOD AND ALERTNESS
Guayusa: Plant native to the Amazon, with the leaves brewed for tea - rich in antioxidants & caffeine.

LOWER STRESS LEVEL AND BOOST YOUR ENERGY
Functional Mushrooms: 15 of 2,000 mushroom varieties are considered ‘functional’ by helping support wellbeing.

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Psychoactives

DEFINITION
Chemical substances that change nervous system function and result in alterations in perception, mood, consciousness, cognition, or behavior.

BENEFITS
Could be both pleasurable and beneficial by reducing stress with ongoing medical research suggesting improvements in mood and perception altering effects.

TREAT PTSD AND MANAGE MOODS
MDMA: The main substance in ecstasy, this stimulant is gaining credibility as a clinical treatment for PTSD.

TREAT DEPRESSION AND MANAGE MOODS
Psilocybin: Hallucenogenic fungus more commonly known as ‘magic mushrooms’. Increasingly decriminalised with research showing benefits in treating depression along with microdosing.

REDUCE ANXIETY AND STRESS
LSD: Also known as ‘acid’, it intensifies thoughts, emotions and sensory perception whilst inducing hallucinations.

RELIVE SYMPTOMS OF DEPRESSION AND ADDICTION
Ibogaine: Naturally occurring in certain plants.

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Is Everything Legal?

Not yet, but we’ve seen major changes in an incredibly short space of time. As we know, the US is leading the way when it comes to legalization with 47 states now having some form of cannabis allowance. This is starting to open the door for 'psychedelics', focusing on the many potential benefits for treating mental illness. Psilocybin for example, was legalized in Oregon at the end of 2020, becoming the first state to do so and now it looks like California will follow suit in the next few months.

The psychedelic health care market alone is projected to be worth $10.75 billion by 2027 which is why there’s a large amount of investment flooding in to this emerging industry. Legalization could take a long time though and it’s not inevitable, but with money comes influence so the future may not be that far away.

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Brands Innovating Today

SPIRITLESS Non-alcoholic bourbon targeted at “the conscientious cocktailers, the people who want to live fully but drink differently.” Founded in 2019 and already achieved nationwide distribution in the US.

ARTET A “modern beverage inspired by tradition.” And unlike traditional aperitifs, Artet is non-alcoholic & cannabis infused. They’re at the centre of the infused beverage growth in the US, where monthly sales have increased from $2.3m in 2017 to $7.9m in 2020.

SILO WELLNESS Launched the first global functional mushrooms brand, Marley One, in 2021. Created in partnership with the Bob Marley Foundation, the brand launch garnered 22m media impressions and secured a $1.4m distribution deal in the UK.

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Ready for R&D

What actives can your brand focus on
to enhance its product offering and curate
the perfect mood?


Cheatsheet

Download our list of the active ingredients of the future.
Download Here

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Do you have questions or ideas around this story? Get in touch!

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Isn’t it time to [Shift] your perspective?

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Curious about the next big things that might impact your brand - or your way of life? Well, there's a four trillion dollar annual economy hiding in plain sight. The above-the-shoulder economy of Altered States is now a codified, quantified, and bona fide phenomenon. As we begin to explore new ways to stimulate our mind, body, and spirit – we discover the possibilities are seemingly endless.

As specialists in stimulating the mind, body, and spirit, The Mighty Shed created Future[Possible] to explore the emerging culture of Altered States, so you can stay ahead of – and be a part of – what's about to happen next. Enter Future[Possible] and instantly shift into a world filled with soothingly simple inspiration at your fingertips.

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Isn’t it time to [Shift] your perspective?

Icon Seperator


Curious about the next big things that might impact your brand - or your way of life? Well, there's a four trillion dollar annual economy hiding in plain sight. The above-the-shoulder economy of Altered States is now a codified, quantified, and bona fide phenomenon. As we begin to explore new ways to stimulate our mind, body, and spirit – we discover the possibilities are seemingly endless.

As specialists in stimulating the mind, body, and spirit, The Mighty Shed created Future[Possible] to explore the emerging culture of Altered States, so you can stay ahead of – and be a part of – what's about to happen next. Enter Future[Possible] and instantly shift into a world filled with soothingly simple inspiration at your fingertips.

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