Health and wellness drinks drive US beverage market

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 19th February 2013

New US research by Euromonitor has found that health and wellness beverages are continuing to increase in popularity, equating to 44 per cent of sales in the non-alcoholic beverage market.

The Functionality, Naturalness and Stevia Key to Developing Beverages to Fit Today’s Trends report said that retail value of health positioned drinks reached US $274 billion in 2011, with that figure expected to outperform soft drinks and hot drinks between 2012-2016.

While “naturally healthy” beverages made up 64 per cent of the health and wellness beverage market, “organic” beverages still only account for one per cent.

The shift in the beverage market towards “healthier” choices has also been reflected in Australia, with Coca-Cola South Pacific concentrating the majority of its 2013 marketing on the Coke Zero and Powerade Zero brands that do not contain sugar.

However, Euromonitor Insight Analyst Diana Cowland said that consumers are not just looking for low-calorie beverages, but for drinks with additional health properties including pre-biotic and pro-biotic attributes.

“The demand for healthy beverages is moving away from purely low-calorie variants to those which, whilst low-calorie, also offer added health benefits through either a high proportion of natural ingredients, such as stevia or superfruit juice or added functionality,” Ms Cowland said.

“Drinks positioned at particular health concerns such as cardiovascular health or digestive health are therefore becoming more common across the globe,” she added.

Health drinks account for 44 per cent of the US non-alcoholic beverage market.