Chocolate-based flavoured powder drinks tends to comprise indulgent products high in sugar, making the category less attractive than previously given the large health and wellness trends. While Americans are still willing to indulge occasionally in these beverages, especially in the winter months, they are less inclined to drink them regularly.
Flavoured powder drinks tend to appeal much more strongly to children who do not usually consume coffee or tea. A declining number of children in the US is thus a major long-term challenge to the category, with it being difficult for players to generate growth from a shrinking consumer base.
None of the beverages classified as other plant-based hot drinks plays a major role in the US hot drinks market, but many are available. Yerba mate is growing but category leader Guayaki is shifting its focus to RTD products although it still sells mate in bagged and loose form.
Nesquik is one of the most important brands in flavoured powder drinks in the US, but in recent years has shifted its focus away from this category towards RTD products. Protein-enhanced dairy drinks have in particular been a priority, as these are more in line with larger trends than powder drinks are.
Private label products have performed the best in chocolate-based flavoured powder drinks and their collective share is growing amidst a general category decline. Consumers tend to view chocolate-based flavoured powder drinks as less differentiated products than coffee or tea, so there is less brand loyalty keeping them from switching to inexpensive alternatives.
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