Soft drink and fruit juice consumption declining in Australia

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 3rd April 2013

The consumption of soft drinks and fruit juice in Australia declined in 2012, compared to figures from 2008, according to a recent study by market research organisation Roy Morgan Research.

According the research, in the 12 months to December 2012, 57 per cent of Australians aged 14 and over consumed soft drinks in an average seven-day period, compared to 61 per cent in the year to December 2008. Consumption of fruit juices and drinks dropped from 41 per cent in the year to December 2008, to 33 per cent in 2012. Cordial consumption also declined, dropping from 21 per cent in 2008 to 16 per cent in 2012.

Consumption of bottled spring water dropped from 17 per cent in the year to December 2008 to 15 per cent in 2012. Sparkling mineral water and sports and energy drinks remained relatively stable: consumption of sparkling mineral water dropped just 1 per cent in five years, from 12 per cent in 2008 to 11 per cent in 2012, and consumption of sports and energy drinks was 11 per cent in both 2008 and 2012.

The only category to have gained popularity was iced tea, which was consumed by 5 per cent of Australians in the year to December 2012; a 25 per cent increase from the same period in 2008.

“Over the last five years there has been a clear decline in the popularity of carbonated soft drinks, fruit juices and cordial among Australians aged 14 plus,” said Norman Morris, Industry Communications Director at Roy Morgan Research. “Further research from Roy Morgan shows that this decrease is largely being driven by reduced consumption among Aussies aged under 35, and may be motivated by a desire for drinks containing less sugar,” he said.

The decline in popularity of non-alcoholic beverages among Australians is not mirrored in New Zealand, where the only category to see a significant decrease was fruit juices and drinks, which dropped from 52 per cent in the year to December 2008 to 46 per cent in 2012.

The proportion of New Zealanders consuming soft drinks has declined only slightly in the last five years, while the proportion of those who drink cordial has grown.