Bottled water opens lead on CSDs
Bottled water is the No. 1 beverage product in the U.S., by volume, for a second year in a row, according to a new release from the International Bottled Water Association (IBWA) and the Beverage Marketing Corporation (BMC).
Bottled water volume grew to 13.7 billion gallons in 2017, a 7% increase over the previous year.
The distance between bottled water and carbonated soft drinks (CSDs) continues to widen as consumers increasingly choose bottled water instead of soda. Carbonated soft drink sales decreased for the thirteenth consecutive year, according to the most recent numbers from BMC.
Bottled water sales now total $18.5 billion, an increase of 8.8%. Per capita consumption exceeds 42 gallons of bottled water, a 6.2% increase. Meanwhile, the average annual intake of carbonated soft drinks has slipped to 37.5 gallons, BMC statistics show. Beverage Marketing predicts bottled water will climb higher than 50 gallons per capita within just a few more years.
Within the bottled water category, all segments grew in 2017:
- Domestic non-sparkling increased 5.5%.
- Domestic sparkling increased 27.5%.
- Imported water increased 9.2%.
“Bottled water’s rocket-like rise in popularity coincides with pronounced shifts in consumer preferences for refreshment and rehydration. As the quintessential portable and affordable beverage, bottled water introduces new usage occasions and habits. Suitable for consumption at any time of the day or night, and not necessarily in need of being kept ice cold, bottled water simply is the preferred beverage not only for consumers aiming to reduce caloric intake or lessen artificial sweetener usage but also for consumers of all kinds,” said Michael C. Bellas, BMC chairman and CEO.
The surge in sales is reflects the evolving change in U.S. consumer demand.
“Healthy, convenient, and safe, bottled water is America’s favorite packaged water for many reasons,” said Joe Doss, IBWA president and CEO. “Research and polling indicate people are continuing to make the switch from other packaged drinks to bottled water. Some of the reasons include that it’s healthy and convenient for on-the-go lifestyles.