Bottled Water - UK - March 2014
“There is a lot of scope for packaging innovation, to increase the convenience of these products for users, make them more visually appealing and give them standout. Importantly, this would help position the company as being more innovative and forward-thinking than its competitors.”
– Emma Clifford, Senior Food Analyst
Some questions answered in this report include:
- How cam companies overcome bottled water’s reliance on the hot summer weather?
- Could packaging innovation grow the appeal of bottled water?
- How can flavoured bottled water compete more effectively with other soft drinks?
Highlighting the influence weather has on the bottled water market, 2013 was an exceptional year for off-trade sales. The hot, dry weather, the like of which has not been seen since 2006 – and in particular the prolonged July heat wave – saw volume sales jump by 10% year on year. This saw bottled water outperform the wider soft drinks market by a clear margin, with usage boosted by the widespread perception that these products offer superior hydration to other drinks.
The bottled water market also benefits from favourable comparisons to rival categories in terms of health. This is particularly the case given that the high sugar content of food and drink is a hot topic in both the media and political spheres at the moment, with CSDs often singled out as among the worst offenders.
This report covers sales of bottled water including:
Water for sale in PET (polyethylene terephthalate) bottles and glass bottles
Water offered for sale in other pack types, such as cans and cartons
Plain water ie unflavoured
Flavoured waters and fortified waters which see mineral water enhanced with natural flavours, herbs, vitamins and/or sweeteners
Carbonated water, also known as sparkling water, which is made by dissolving carbon dioxide into the water, through a process of carbonation.
According to the British Soft Drinks Association (BSDA), there are three main types of bottled waters as defined in the Natural Mineral Water, Spring Water and Bottled Drinking Water Regulations 2007. Only products which meet the specifications within these regulations may use one of these terms:
- Natural mineral water: Natural mineral waters must come from a protected source and by law may not undergo any treatment except filtration to remove sand particles or the addition of carbon dioxide to create a sparkling product. Therefore what goes into the bottle is the same as what comes out of the ground.
- Spring water: Spring waters can come from a single non-polluted ground water source. Unlike natural mineral waters, spring waters may undergo permitted treatments in order to meet the microbiological criteria and to comply with standards based on the Drinking Water Regulations. Unlike natural mineral waters there is no formal recognition process required for spring water, although they must still be registered with the local authority.
- Table water: Table water refers to bottled water which may come from more than one source and may include the public water supply. Treatment is permitted which results in the water achieving the compositional or microbiological requirements of the regulations. Some companies may also add mineral salts to their waters to replace minerals lost during treatments or to enhance those which already exist.
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