Maeil Enyo Fermented Soft Drinks

These are the newest products from the South Korean company Maeil Dairies. I learned about them for the first time during the 2009 Korean Festival in Los Angeles when I spotted the Maeil product mascots.

The bottles in the picture are the samples they provided me! I’ve already drunk the contents so you see that the foil covers have been peeled back. Each container is just 2.7 fluid ounces (77 milliliters) – less than a mouthful, using my body as reference.

The small portion is because Enyo is meant for very young children. Moreover, serving sizes in Korea are generally one-tenth of those in the United States.

I must say though that you should not give kids the Gold Kiwi flavor, seen on the left in the picture. It contains high-fructose corn syrup! Better the one on the right, which is a 무가당 (sugarless) variant. The label identifies these drinks as “fermented soft drink.” In certain parts of the United States, a soft drink is soda — bubbly, not fermented. These drinks are like the thin liquid of the Japanese drink Yakult, just with a flavorful twist.

Gold Kiwi Enyo Ingredients: water, skim milk powder, HFCS, gold kiwi juice concentrate, calcium lactate, multi-vitamin, pectin, citric acid, L. acidophilus, L. bulgaricus, B. Lactis, S. thermophilus, sucralose, artificial flavors.

Sugarless Enyo Ingredients: water, pear juice concentrate, skim milk powder, lemon juice concentrate, calcium lactate, ferrous lactate, multi-vitamin, green tea extract, L. casei, sucralose, artificial flavors.

Nutrition Facts (practically the same for both): 50 calories, none from fat. No fat, not even saturated fat. Total carbohydrate 12 grams. No dietary fiber. Sugars 11 g. No cholesterol. Sodium 15 milligrams. Less than 1 gram of Protein. Contains calcium, iron, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Nicotinic Acid, Vitamin B5, Folic Acid, Vitamin C, Vitamin D3, Vitamin E.

(Ingredients and Nutrition Facts also in French!)

Manufactured by Maeil Dairies Co., Ltd. CPO Box 4008, Seoul. Product of Korea. Golden Kiwi UPC 8 801121 105696. Sugar-Free UPC 8 801121 105634

Other minor differences between the two are in the subtitles in front.

Golden Kiwi: B Vitamins, Calcium added, Fat Free.
In Korean: Contains juice of Golden Kiwi produced in New Zealand

Sugar-Free: 8 Vitamins, Green Tea Extract, Calcium & Iron Added
In Hangul: Refreshing Taste from Natural Juice Without Sugar.

CA CRV is stamped on the bottle. The ladies manning the Maeil booth did say that these have just been made available at the Korean supermarkets in Koreatown. I haven’t checked the prices yet.

Kudos to Maeil for the cool design of the bottle’s shape and colors.

I have nothing against parents giving the Sugar-Free Enyo to their kids, despite the sucralose. It’s nutritious enough, and the portion size is perfect for training children from a young age to be satisfied with a little. Maybe it’ll make them less likely to find a 64-ounce Super Big Gulp an acceptable volume to ingest when they’re older.