x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 29 July 2017

Sweetcorn shake in a can tries to win fans in the UAE

A milkshake made from cereal that tastes like sweetcorn is being touted as the healthy breakfast of the future.

Cereal Milk, made in Singapore, is made from cereal and comes in sweetcorn, strawberry, banana and chocolate flavours. Razan Alzayani / The National
Cereal Milk, made in Singapore, is made from cereal and comes in sweetcorn, strawberry, banana and chocolate flavours. Razan Alzayani / The National

DUBAI // A milkshake made from cereal that tastes like sweetcorn is being touted as the healthy breakfast of the future.

Its makers say the canned drink could help reduce obesity and cholesterol and prevent diabetes.

Cereal Milk was among the new foods and beverages on show at the recent Gulfood exhibition in Dubai.

"The drink is very nutritious and it was mainly created for the African market, including Ghana, Nigeria, Angola," said Jermyn Wong, the export sales executive at Singapore's Tastyfood Industries, which made the drink. "It's for all ages and it's usually taken for breakfast."

Produced in China since 2005, the halal-certified drink has a shelf life of two years.

"We mix powdered wheat cereal with milk, heat it at a high temperature and put it inside a can," Mr Wong said. "It can be stored in a fridge or at room temperature."

The 140-calorie drink comes in flavours including chocolate, strawberry, banana and sweetcorn.

"It's unusual but the corn actually has a nicer flavour," Mr Wong said. "Our most popular flavours are the sweetcorn and the chocolate."

But visitors to Gulfood were not so sure.

"It smells and tastes like expired canned sweetcorn," said Chris Combs, from the UK. "It's sweet but like a fake or industrial sweetness.

"It leaves a thick mucus-like layer on my tongue and it's overly sweet.

"Everything about it tastes processed and industrialised."

Michelle Cardy, an Irish visitor, said: "I'd never have that again. What makes cereal appealing is that there is a crunch factor but this is just an excessively sweet beverage that doesn't even taste good."

But Mr Wong believed the drink would take off in the Middle East.

"When you're hungry, you drink it and it can replenish your hunger for three hours and quench your thirst at the same time," he said.

He was looking for local distributors and planned to export the product to South American countries, including Brazil.

"I want to test the market for cereal first to see if it could work in the UAE," he said.

cmalek@thenational.ae