Despite the decline seen in overall BFY beverages in 2020, BFY reduced caffeine beverages has gained popularity in response to more time spent at home due to COVID-19, with BFY reduced caffeine soft drinks seeing notable growth, due to the strong performance of the largest category, reduced caffeine RTD tea. Due to increased time spent at home, especially with the rising number of consumers working from home, some people found themselves experiencing a deterioration of sleep compared with when they commuted to the workplace.
Due to rising health-consciousness due to COVID-19, and therefore the growing popularity of reduced caffeine RTD tea, an expansion was seen in the range of reduced caffeine RTD green tea in 2020, which also helped to increase the growth rate of BFY reduced caffeine beverages. For instance, in 2020 ITO EN launched the first reduced caffeine variety from its long-established RTD green tea brand Oi Ocha.
In August 2020, Coca-Cola (Japan), the leading company in overall BFY beverages due to its dominance of BFY reduced sugar beverages, renewed its zero-calorie product Coca-Cola Zero for the first time in five years. The renewal was encouraged by increased health awareness due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as many people experienced weight gain due to the greater amount of time spent at home.
At the beginning of the forecast period consumers are expected to continue to spend more time at home compared with the pre-COVID-19 period. Until the virus has been eradicated, or at least well-controlled, advice is likely to be to stay at home.
With increasing awareness of the need for good sleep, consumer demand to control the level of caffeine intake will continue to grow. Thus, BFY reduced caffeine beverages is expected to see steady growth and indeed the highest current value CAGR within BFY beverages in the forecast period.
Although the increase in the amount of time spent at home will benefit BFY beverages, the competition with naturally healthy beverages will continue for both BFY reduced sugar beverages and BFY reduced caffeine beverages. For instance, rather than choosing BFY reduced sugar beverages, many consumers may instead turn to products with a healthier more natural positioning, especially carbonated bottled water, which is naturally sugar-free.
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