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Soft Drink Insights

Rob Vance

Vice President

Penn Schoen Berland



Insight | Health


Growth coming

From “refreshing

goodness” drinks


For the soft drinks category, certainly in Europe, the value growth has come from drinks that can be characterized as, “refreshing goodness,” which includes drinks with a health benefit, often in a particular niche and commanding a premium. These drinks, a bit up the value chain, are appealing to new audiences. New brands are proliferating like craft beers, and the major brands are adding new options to their own offerings.


Nigel Birch

Senior Clients Director

Kantar Millward Brown



Insight | Occasions


Added occasions

Potentially drive

more consumption


The long-term trends are challenging, with innovation and new product launches driving the category which is experiencing declining consumption of carbonated drinks, potential new competition from zero alcohol brands, and regulations such as sugar tax.  In this context, all brands in the drinks industry—soft drinks or alcohol—are realizing that drinking occasions are becoming more and more important. And they are looking at lifestyle, as much as at age groups or other demographics, to find new opportunities.



Mark Foster

Director, Consumer Insight




Insight | Premiumization


While volume

declines, value

moves upward


The soft drinks category, including sparkling waters, energy, and juices, is still growing in value terms across Western Europe, although the category continues to decline in volume. The new, premium-priced adult soft drinks are adding value to the market. Measured by in-home value, the soft drinks category is still growing in Great Britain, France, Spain, and Belgium, for example.


Casey Caufield-Grabinski


Kantar Millward Brown



Insight | Salience


New drinking

tastes require

diverse portfolio


The soft drinks landscape is evolving. To maintain market share, the major soft drink makers need a diverse portfolio of brands that will accommodate the needs of everybody, which means that when people no longer reach for the heritage brand, they go for another brand within the portfolio. With taste being a key driver of category choice, major brands need to reinforce their taste credentials, while new brands need to make sure they deliver on it in order to attract users. Physical availability, supported by media investment will be instrumental in building salience for new brands in emerging segments.