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Kinnie, Malta’s national treasure, celebrates 70th anniversary 5/16/2022

Kinnie, Malta’s national treasure, celebrates 70th anniversary

Forever young and always a classic, Kinnie, the iconic beverage dubbed Malta’s own favourite soft drink, celebrates its 70th anniversary this year.

Ever since its launch on the local market in 1952 by Simonds Farsons Cisk, Kinnie has always set out to be different from other beverages and over the past 70 years the unique and unrivalled bittersweet soft drink has evolved to become one of Malta’s leading and much-loved brands.

Its recipe remains a closely guarded secret and is drawn from all-natural essences extracted from oranges and a blend of aromatic and exotic herbs to enhance the beverage’s original flavour and golden amber colour.

Kinnie was the brainchild of former Chairman and Managing Director of Farsons, the late Anthony Miceli Farrugia, or is-Sur Ninì as he was better known. The beverage was developed as a response to the entry of a number of international brands, mainly cola-flavoured, that were being introduced into post-war Malta. In Sur Ninì’s own words, “When we launched Kinnie in 1952, we had no intention of coming into the market with a soft drink which tasted like any of the renowned international beverages. Our new drink had to possess a distinctive character, so as to identify it from the competition.”

In spite of the many imitations that Kinnie has inspired over the years, being different and original was always key to the brand’s development and Kinnie has continued to retain its appeal, successfully competing against the world’s largest global soft drink brands.

The Kinnie portfolio has been extended over the years and now includes two variants: Diet Kinnie, a low-calorie version launched in 1984; and Kinnie Zest, a sugar-free, extra orange flavour variant that appeals to a younger generation of new consumers, launched in 2007. In addition, 2021 saw the hugely successful launch of Kinnie Spritz, a 4% ABV alcoholic aperitivo. Blended with a unique mix of natural bitters and botanicals and Italian sparkling white wine, Kinnie Spritz builds on Kinnie’s inherent mixability and classic bittersweet flavour.

Kinnie plays a key role in Farsons’ overall strategy for future growth and is significant particularly to the exports area. Already available across Europe in countries such as the UK, Poland, France, Germany, Czech Republic and The Netherlands amongst others, Kinnie is also available further afield in Canada and Australia.

Susan Weenink Camilleri, Head of Sales and Marketing, commented, “The story of Kinnie is as unique as is its distinctive taste and flavour and celebrating a 70th anniversary is a huge milestone for any brand. We have a number of initiatives, promotions and activities lined up for the weeks and months ahead marking this special occasion. We have also commissioned a set of original illustrations that will be featured widely across the celebratory campaign, including limited-edition packaging and advertising.”

Kinnie is produced, marketed and distributed by Simonds Farsons Cisk plc, a member of The Farsons Group.