Bottled Water Sales Keep on Rising Steadily in US

April 11, 2012

Bottled water sales continue to rise steadily across the United States; good news for bottled water sales all over the world!

The National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) recently announced that last year’s increase in bottled water sales has continued its upswing during the first few months of 2012. NACS has attributed the rise to the growing popularity of both sparkling and flavoured waters.

According to SymphonyIRI, private-label water is the category’s top seller with about 16% of the market share. Research firm, Mintel International, also announced last year that it believed that bottled water sales should increase by 39% on 2010 levels by 2015.

Gary Hemphill, senior vice president of Beverage Marketing Corp in New York City, stated: “The market for single-serve bottled water continues to grow, but the greatest growth is coming at the low-end of the market, especially private label.”

Hemphill also looked beyond the benefits of the bottled water business and focused on the benefits of water in general: “Bottled water remains a great choice for consumers seeking healthy refreshment.”

Although retail bottled water sales were up last year, however, according to Jack Trebilcock, director of marketing and category management at Miller Oil Co’s 33 Miller Marts and Miller’s Neighborhood Markets, the increase could have been a ‘rebound’ reaction: “I think water came just behind tea, which was the shining star last year. Bottled water was a kind of rebound,” he said. “For a year or so sales were a little flat,   but they bounced back.”

That comeback was not only aided by the introduction last spring of a private label water brand called Miller’s (which Trebilcock said took off much better than management had anticipated), but also by the reintroduction of Perrier to store shelves. “Prior to that we really had not had a sparkling water, so that was a nice hit for us,” Trebilcock declared. “Then, in the summertime, we brought in Coconut Water, which was real heavy at NACS, and it performed pretty well for us.”

Sales and Environment Care

Sales are not the only thing that must concern us, as we can see across the Atlantic. According to a new report from advocacy group, As You Sow, executives at several of the top beverage manufacturers, including Nestlé Waters North America, have made public the fact that they would support legislation making producers financially responsible for the collection and recycling of used beverage packaging.

Conrad MacKerron, senior director of As You Sow’s Corporate Social Responsibility Program declared: “Since our last Surrey, one major development has been the willingness of leading beverage companies to consider new legislative mandates requiring them to take responsibility for their used packaging. Many beverage and consumer packaged goods companies in other countries pay fees to finance the recovery of their packaging. It’s significant that companies are finally acknowledging the need to take responsibility in the U.S. as well.”

In addition to all of these guidelines, shops and convenience stores could alleviate consumers’ fears and break down their resistance to buying beverages in plastic bottles by promoting suppliers’ programs.

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