More people in the United States have stopped drinking traditional sodas. So, what do they consume instead ? According to research by Nestlé Waters North America:
• 51% choose non-flavoured bottled water
• 12% opt for sweetened or enhanced water
• 3% switch to sparkling water.
Two major deals dominated the 35 food and drink transactions recorded on the bevblog.net database in May:
• $7,000 million from China’s Shuanghui for Smithfield in the United States.
• $2,500 million sales to be generated by Exopack’s restructuring with a base in Luxembourg.
China featured strongly, with three other substantial transfers:
• $636 million for Huiyuan Juice’s restructuring.
• €500 million sales expected from Mengniu’s yogurt joint venture with Danone.
• $410 million from Mengniu for 27% of China Modern Dairy.
Dairy was the most active sector with 7 transactions, followed by alcohol and soft drinks on 6 each, then ingredients on 4.
The United States was involved in 18, the United Kingdom in 10, China in 6 and France in 5.
Steel came out on top, according to APEAL, the European steel packaging association. Its ranking of the latest European recycling rates for different packaging materials came up with the following league table:
1 Steel 74%
2 Glass 70%
3 Aluminium 67%
4 Cartons 37%
5 Plastic 33%
I suspect PET alone would score far more highly than the average for all plastic.
Five packaging materials. Five recycling rates. But which material achieves which rate ? The figures are for Europe and are the latest available.
- Materials – aluminium, cartons, glass, plastic, steel.
- Rates – 33%, 37%, 67%, 70%, 74%.
Do have a try. Answers next week.
I spoke at a fascinating international seminar last week. It was about how consumer behaviour changes between generations. Our focus was on generations α aged 0-3, Z aged 3-18, Y aged 19-33 and X aged 34-47 plus baby boomers aged 48-68.
Here are some highlights and anecdotes:
- Children want to be treated as 2-3 years older, yet parents tend to treat their children as 2-3 years younger.
- Older people feel 10-15 years younger than they are.
- If you tell children a product is good for them, they’ll think it tastes bad.
- Children want to take control, while older people don’t want to lose control.
- For children, liking follows on closely from familiarity.
- The similarities between age groups are greater than the differences.
- Children are more predictable than baby boomers.
- 18-25 year olds are less likely to try new things than children and other adults.
On an unsustainable flight, I finally read the evidence that will lead towards a roadmap for improved UK soft drinks sustainability. It’s full of many insights and freely available on the Government website via randd.defra.gov.uk. The main sources of greenhouse gas emissions are:
• 42% packaging (24% PET, 7% aluminium, 5% secondary, 2% carton, 2% glass, 1% steel)
• 32% fruit, 4% sugar, 3% other ingredients
• 9% distribution, 8% retail refrigeration
• 1.8 million tonnes carbonated soft drinks, 2.2 million tonnes fruit juice and flavoured drinks, 0.4 million tonnes bottled water.
The estimate for total emissions was reduced from an earlier figure of 7.2 million tonnes to 4.5 million tonnes. Let’s hope a roadmap can achieve another big reduction. Zenith has already signed up in support.
There was a lot of soul searching at Zenith’s Italian beverage industry conference in conjunction with Assobibe last week. Some speakers and delegates lamented a lack of innovation.
Companies did too little. Retailers didn’t support them. Consumers didn’t respond. Government discouraged everything by putting up taxes.
Well, I saw some significant innovation at the conference and at the Tuttofood trade show held at the same time.
There were the usual new suspects from premium waters to coconut waters and energy drinks, but there were many other interesting developments too.
I noted two emerging trends:
- more premium adult soft drinks, such as from Lurisia and Tomarchio
- strong iced tea entries, such as SanThé and Thè Rocchetta.
I was also encouraged by some thinking that would be new in any country:
- Café Zero Menta Shock
- Sanpellegrino’s Incontri in orange fig and lemon mint
- Sanpellegrino’s Sanbitter Emozioni with spicy flavours
- Schweppes Aperitivo.
The question is not whether it’s there. The question is whether it will work.
I believe there remains lots more growth potential for energy drinks internationally, but the latest US figures show a distinct deceleration.
Beverage Digest reports a drop from 18.6% retail volume growth in the first quarter of 2012 to just 3.6% in the first quarter of 2013.
Monster and Red Bull were still up in high single figures, though, with Monster holding a 41% volume share and Red Bull on 28%.