Start-up company Manflu has claimed a market first with the launch of a male comfort drink to help soothe men with the ­sniffles.

Manflu (rsp: £1.99), which is being positioned as "comfort and sympathy" in a bottle, is a natural lemon-lime and honey flavour drink that contains added Vitamin C [1000mg], echinacea and zinc. It can be drunk on the go as a shot, or poured into a mug and mixed with hot water.

One of the key benefits of the drink, now in 424 Sainsbury's, was that it contained no paracetamol or other medicine so consumers could use it with other products, said brand director Jonathan Evans an ex-Pot Noodle and Bacardi marketer. "Consumers will buy their usual medicine and will buy this as a booster shot."

Manflu is in listings talks with other retailers.