Sales growth of better for you beverages has slowed in 2020, despite restrictions on foodservice that hit on-trade sales. The dip in retail demand has been largely driven by the rise in consumers working and studying at home as part of the government’s attempt to control the virus, which has impacted sales of impulse, on-the-go consumption.
BFY reduced sugar beverages are the driving force behind BFY beverages and are set to generate almost all value sales in 2020. Reduced sugar carbonates is the largest part of this group of products, and in 2018 and 2019 saw strong growth thanks to a series of product launches including Coca-Cola Finland Oy’s launch of new Coca-Cola Zero variants including Coca Cola Zero Vadelma (raspberry) in 2018, Coca Cola Sitruuna (lemon) 2019 and Coca Cola Persikka (peach) in 2020.
BFY beverages are being to see some sales cannibalisation from fortified/functional drinks, which has seen a number of reduced-sugar launches in 2019 and 2020. These include the functional water brand Battery Refresh from Sinebrychoff Oy Ab, and launches in energy drinks (Lohilo Foods AB’s Lohilo and Puhdistamo Real Foods Oy’s Puhdistamo), and sports drinks (Hartwall Oy Ab’s Gatorade Zero).
Better for you beverages are anticipated to return to solid growth over the forecast period, as the reopening of the economy and the lifting of restrictions on movement, education and workplaces will reinvigorate on-the-go and impulse sales. In addition, rising consumer health awareness should help keep demand buoyant, in particular for BFY reduced sugar beverages, the largest part of the category.
Better for you beverages are set to benefit from changing consumer habits, especially in regard to health, but the category is set to come under increasing threat from product development in other sectors. Within naturally healthy beverages, for example, there have been a series of launches positioning kombucha as an on-the-go alternative to reduced sugar beverages, rather than the niche category that these products were originally positioned as.
BFY reduced caffeine beverages, which consists wholly of reduced caffeine fresh coffee, still accounts for a small share of value sales of better for you beverages. However, these products are set to see the strongest growth in current value terms over the forecast period.
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