Industry-based innovation has become crucial for carbonated beverages after 13 consecutive years of decline

Industry-based innovation has become crucial for carbonated beverages after 13 consecutive years of decline
To talk about the penetration of consumers, carbonated soft drinks are still a giant in the US beverage market. Market research consultancy Mintel pointed out in a report in April 2017 entitled "Carbonated Soft Drinks - USA" that the penetration rate of such products reached about 90%. However, in the face of the decline in sales, some analysts believe that this mature beverage sector needs more innovation.

According to the report, “In particular, suppliers need to meet the needs of consumers for healthier products, diversified tastes and additional benefits.” “The digital generation and the millennial generation are two more diverse ethnicities. Generations, it is extremely important for them to participate effectively in the future sales growth."

The urgency of innovation in the carbonated soft drink market has been corroborated by the decline in sales in the field for several years. “In 2017, sales of carbonated soft drinks fell again,” said Gary Hemphill, general manager of research at New York Beverage Marketing (BMC), in the April issue of the Beverage Industry. “The actual decline was one percentage point higher than the company’s initial data. This decline is consistent with the performance in recent years. Today, sales of carbonated soft drinks have declined for 13 consecutive years."

Catherine Krol, research analyst at Euromonitor International, also pointed out that the overall market for carbonated soft drinks faces many challenges. In the April issue of the beverage industry, she said, “The total sales of carbonated beverages in 2017 has stagnated, indicating that the overall perception of carbonated soft drinks is deteriorating.” “Although there are some bright spots in ginger soda and tonic water, the whole The overwhelming majority of the market has shown continued decline."

*Coke includes decaffeinated, cherry, lemon, lime and vanilla cola.

Note: Carbonated soft drinks products include packaging and current products, conventional products and low-calorie products.

Source: Beverage Marketing Company (BMC).

Krol added that the carbonated soft drink market set a record low in 2013 since 2013, indicating that the road ahead is full of more challenges. “Coke carbonated beverages continue to decline in the past year, so the main factor of this huge decline is attributed to non-cola-based carbonated beverages – which first announced negative growth rates in 2017.” “Healthy health campaigns have resulted in low-calorie carbonation The soft drink has fallen sharply, and the 2017 data shows that the full-calorie carbonated beverages have not been spared."


Krol pointed out that with the decline in conventional and low-calorie carbonated beverages in 2017, the previous practice of helping brand owners to stop this trend may not be as effective during this period. “Conventional carbonated soft drinks continue to decline in 2017, but the decline is lower than low-calorie carbonated soft drinks,” she said. “In the past few years, low-calorie carbonated soft drinks have fallen freely in both value and sales. Interesting. The trend is that the value of regular carbonated soft drinks is beginning to slip, with the underlying signal that the current value-added strategy in the carbonated beverage sector may be in the midst of a recession."


Although the carbonated soft drink market is facing battles on multiple fronts, Krol mentioned that manufacturers have used shrinking package sizes to compensate for the decline in sales and continue to enrich the diversity of high-end products.


The Coca-Cola Company, based in Atlanta, and PepsiCo Co., Ltd., based in Purchase, New York, have consistently explored the decline in sales of carbonated soft drinks through the discovery of sweeteners.


“Stevia has broken through the space of the 'health health campaign' to provide a zero-calorie natural sweetener,” Krol said. “Overall, high-intensity sweeteners have grown tremendously over the past few years, providing consumers with alternatives to artificial sweeteners such as aspartame, both sweet and beneficial to consumers. The use of stevioside/erythritol has been described by some consumers as “hardship”, and PepsiCo and Coca-Cola have been busy with research and development, hoping to develop a stevia-flavored carbonated beverage that appeals to consumers' most popular tastes.”


BMC's Hemphill notes that the sub-market for low-calorie carbonated soft drinks is generally underperforming, and he said emerging sweetener solutions will be critical to the future of the entire field.


“Consumers are not satisfied with the current low-calorie sweeteners, consume less carbonated soft drinks, and in some cases even completely exclude products in the field,” he said. “The company believes that, in response, companies will use other low-calorie sweeteners that will revitalize the field and make some improvements in taste.”


Krol also believes that the segment of the premium soda market will create potential for the carbonated soft drink market. “As boutique sodas begin to evolve and become popular, orange and other tropical flavored carbonated beverages may have the power to extend to other non-traditional groups for higher returns.”

The output of carbonated beverages is lower, where is the industry?
According to foreign media reports, in order to reverse the market downturn, Coca-Cola, which has not been involved in alcoholic beverages for 125 years, decided to enter the alcoholic beverage business and chose Japan as the first step in this field.

Coca-Cola joined Japan's growing "Chu-Hi" sparkling wine market, which is now dominated by Japanese brands such as Strong Zero, Highball Lemon and Slat. An executive at the Coca-Cola Company said the move would put Coca-Cola into a highly competitive market.

Coca-Cola chose to test water in Japan, and it has nothing to do with sparkling wine in the hot market in Japan.

According to public information, Chu-Hi is a canned beverage with an alcohol content of 3%-8%. It is made from Japanese shochu and soda, and is popular among Japanese female consumers. According to market research data, since 2013, the overall growth rate of the Chu-Hi market has been between 5% and 25%, with great potential.

George Gadoño, president of Coca-Cola Japan, said the move was a modest attempt by Coca-Cola for a particular market and that the beverage would probably not be sold outside of Japan.

The two major cola companies Pepsi and Coca-Cola announced last year's performance, net profit decreased by 81% and 23%, respectively, since 2013 fell to a five-year low. With the increase in people's attention to health, the carbonated beverage market has been at a disadvantage. In order to reverse this situation, Coca-Cola has changed its strategy in marketing. It is necessary to start selling wine. Is the carbonated beverage industry really incapable? Where is the carbonated beverage industry?

Carbonated beverage production is lower

Carbonated drinks are divided into juice type, fruit type, cola type, low calorie type, other types, etc. Common brands include: Cola, Sprite, Fanta, Qixi, Mei Nida and so on. Carbonated drinks have been loved by the 80s and 90s, and the output of carbonated beverages has also risen. In 2014, it reached its peak and its output reached 18.166 million tons. Since then, sales have continued to fall. In 2017, the output of carbonated beverages fell to 1,744.41 million tons.

Carbonated beverage sales shrink

Carbonated beverages produce foam and stimulating carbon dioxide, which, when consumed, produces a pleasant taste that is sought after by young people. In 2014, sales of carbonated beverages reached its peak, approaching 18 million tons. Since then, carbonated beverages have started to decline, and sales have continued to decline. In 2016, sales of carbonated beverages fell to 17.39 million tons.

Where is the carbonated beverage industry?

Consumption upgrades, high-sugar and high-calorie carbonated beverages have discouraged many health-conscious consumers, and the “health concept” products such as juice, coarse grain drinks and vinegar drinks have become the new favorite of the beverage market. In the face of internal and external problems, the shrinking of the carbonated beverage market continues to intensify. But the instant noodle and beer industry markets facing the same problem have picked up, will the carbonated beverage industry pick up? Where is the carbonated beverage industry?

In recent years, consumption in the beverage industry has shown a weak trend, and the industry “giant” has taken the brunt, so beverage companies have adopted a price increase strategy to reverse the decline in performance. But for the time being, this measure cannot completely reverse the trend. Under the general trend of the industry, enterprises may only succeed in the process of innovation and integration.

Health diversity may be the direction of "breakthrough". In 2016, Tianfu Coke, a Chongqing-based carbonated beverage that has already been delisted, re-emerged. In addition to the concept of “health” and “herbal”, it also carried out taste innovation and successively developed a series of slogans including soda and salt soda. Healthy drink.

In addition, marketing is also a good weapon for the carbonated beverage industry. With the huge changes in the consumption structure, the beverage industry has also entered the post-marketing era. In the past, the sales department was the leading department of the company, and the performance carried by the marketing department accounted for only about 20%; but in the post-marketing era, the consumer research function of the marketing department and the professional advantages of new product listing planning were highlighted, and the performance of the marketing department The burden may rise to 65%, while sales account for only 35%. Who can show up in the terminal, who can appear in more terminals. Who can build the Internet and the fan chain, who has the opportunity to become the next big single.

The carbonated beverage is not easy to sell. The beverage company invented the strange soda of ginger, cinnamon and cucumber.
Carbonated beverage producers now have the opportunity to rekindle consumer enthusiasm for carbonated beverages. And their new strategy is to add ginger, cinnamon, coffee and cucumber to the drink.

According to Food Dive, Jenny Zegler, a global food and beverage analyst at market research firm Mintel, analyzed that consumers' attitudes toward beverages are becoming healthier and more demanding. They now prefer low-sugar drinks and are already tired of the taste of existing carbonated drinks.

Zegler pointed out that about 41% of adult consumers in the UK believe that they are more willing to buy low-sugar versions of carbonated drinks. In the US market, the shrinking share of carbonated beverages is not new. In the statistics at the end of 2016, 11% of adult consumers in the United States have begun to reduce the consumption of carbonated beverages.

According to industry research firm Beverage Marketing Corporation, in 2012, the total market for carbonated beverages in the US beverage market accounted for 22.1%, and by 2017 this figure had fallen to 19.7%. In 2016, bottled water has surpassed carbonated beverages to become the most popular beverage in the United States. The well-informed American consumers are really uninterested in the taste of the current beverages, and they would rather drink water.

It is urgent for carbonated beverage manufacturers to regain the interest of consumers with more eye catching and stimulating tongue.

In addition to the new flavors of ginger, cinnamon, coffee and cucumber mentioned above, the new citrus and berry flavors are found in many new brands. In the spring of this year, Coca-Cola launched two new flavors of “carbonated beverages (more flavors, more refined carbonated beverages)” – Georgia Peach and California Raspber, and four more. New flavors of Diet Coke - Ginger Lime, Feisty Cherry, Zesty Blood Orange and Twisted Mango. PepsiCo launched a limited edition cinnamon-flavored Pepsi Fire last year.

Coca-Cola's four new flavors of Diet Coke and classic Diet Coke were launched in 2018.

Dr Pepper Snapple, who had just merged with Keurig Green Mountain Coffee, acquired the beverage brand Bai Brands in 2016 and launched a fruit-flavored antioxidant drink. While developing a healthier beverage, Dr Pepper Snapple also took a two-pronged approach, avoiding the sugar in the beverages in marketing activities, and frankly expressing the sweetness of sugary drinks to consumers who still like them. The sales volume has increased.

The popularity of premium carbonated beverages is increasing, which has also affected the landscape of the beverage market. The total US premium carbonated beverage wholesale market increased from $428 million in 2011 to $541 million in 2016, while total sales in 2016 increased by 5% from 2015. The new trend also gives beverage makers the opportunity to innovate in taste and help them develop more favorable pricing strategies. Last year, the two major reasons for the slight increase in beverage wholesale revenue were higher product pricing and product packaging adjustments.

In order to instigate consumers' desire to purchase and feel good, the new taste needs to be better combined with low-sugar formula and healthy product image. In the first quarter of this year's performance, Coca-Cola's revenue was driven by the growth of four new flavors of Diet Coke. In the first quarter of 2018, Coca-Cola gained 5% organic growth, with Diet Coke's performance being the most outstanding. Coca-Cola CEO James Quincey said after the release of the earnings report, “(Jianke Coke) for the first time in 8 years. North America regained share growth."

Consumers' enthusiasm for new flavors, botanical formulations and other ways to enhance taste experience are not only concentrated in the beverage sector, but have now slowly extended to snacks and portable deli products. Food consumers are also looking forward to more exotic fruits and vegetables.

Which beverages are carbonated drinks?
A carbonated beverage is a beverage filled with carbon dioxide gas. Generally, a carbonated beverage is used to drink flatulence. Carbonated drinks are loved by the younger generation. Generally, a hamburger fast food is loved with a drink. So what are the carbonated drinks? This issue of healthy eating culture is for you to analyze.

Food Culture

What is carbonated drink?
Carbonated beverages are beverages that incorporate carbon dioxide gas. Carbon dioxide itself is colorless and odorless. Under cooling and pressure, carbon dioxide is easily dissolved in water to form carbonic acid. 8 grams of carbon dioxide can be dissolved per liter of water. Simply put, carbon dioxide + water = carbonic acid. It is this acidic substance that causes the tingling of the tongue. Carbonated drinks are based on carbonated water and often require the addition of sucrose or spices for flavoring, while carbonated beverages typically contain more than 90% water.
Carbonated beverages can produce carbonation. The reason why carbonated beverages produce foam and creak is because the carbon dioxide gas in the beverage escapes. Carbonic acid is extremely unstable, and at high temperatures and low pressures, it rapidly decomposes and releases carbon dioxide gas. Carbonic acid can be produced not only in nature but also by artificial synthesis.

What are carbonated drinks?
1. Juice type carbonated drinks. Refers to carbonated beverages with a raw juice content of not less than 2.5%;
2. Fruity carbonated drinks. Refers to a carbonated beverage with a fruit-flavored flavor as the main flavoring agent and a raw juice content of less than 2.5%;
3. Coke-type carbonated drinks. a carbonated beverage containing a caramel color, a cola flavor or a fragrant and fruity blend of cola and fruit flavors;
4. Low-calorie carbonated drinks. Refers to various types of carbonated beverages and sodas that replace sugars in whole or in part with sweeteners, with a calorie of less than 75kJ/100mL;
5. Other types of carbonated drinks. It refers to a carbonated beverage containing plant extracts or non-fruity flavors as a flavoring agent and supplementing electrolytes, energy, etc. lost after exercise, such as sports soda.

The carbonated drinks are not sold, and the Chinese are not interested in soda?
Abstract: In the 1980s and 1990s, carbonated beverages were the representative of coolness and fashion. Today, carbonated beverages cannot provide spiritual value beyond the commodity, nor can they reach the minds of this generation of consumers.


Recently, a beverage giant announced its 2017 transcript. The financial report shows that both net income and net profit have declined. In fact, this is not the first time the beverage industry has had a bad situation. According to statistics, sales of carbonated soft drinks in the United States fell for 11 consecutive years. The 20th century can be said to belong to the century of carbonated beverages. Carbonated beverages are popular all over the world and even represent a culture. However, now, why can't carbonated drinks work?

Almost all carbonated beverages are experiencing global sales declines

In 2016, the US beverage industry publication “Beverage Digest” reported that US carbonated soft drink sales fell for 11 consecutive years, down 1.2% in 2015, a decline greater than 0.9% in 2014. The sales volume of the three giants in the industry has declined. At the same time, per capita consumption of carbonated soft drinks fell to 153.7 liters in 2015, the lowest since 30 years since 1985.


In the past two decades, soda sales in the US plummeted

The situation in China is also not optimistic. The data shows that the output of China's carbonated beverages in 2015 was 17.945 million tons, down 0.86% from the 18.1 million tons in 2014.

In 2016, the “Comprehensive Satisfaction Index of the Beverage Industry” released by the China Quality Association showed that the beverage with the lowest consumer preference in 2016 was carbonated beverages, which were arranged after packaging water, protein beverages, functional beverages, tea beverages and juice drinks. .


Image source: "Jinghua Times" information

The 20th century can be said to belong to the century of carbonated beverages. A series of carbonated beverages are popular all over the world and even represent a culture. However, today, why can't carbonated drinks work?

Compared with the slightly sweet taste and the pleasure of drinking, modern people pay more attention to health.

Timg (2).jpg

Speaking of carbonated drinks, what do you think of? One answer on the American question and answer site Quara is very brilliant: the United States, sugar and obesity.

In recent years, due to lifestyle changes, more and more people are beginning to care about the safety and health of their diet. The prevalence of the Mediterranean diet is an example. The decline in sales of carbonated beverages is also the result of a shift in health perceptions.

Carbonated drinks are thought to have a negative impact on human health, such as causing osteoporosis, tooth decay, obesity, etc. Of course, some of them are also controversial. But one thing to be sure is that the sugar content in carbonated drinks is really too high.

According to the recommendations in the “Chinese Dietary Guidelines 2016”: “Control the intake of added sugar, no more than 50 grams per day, preferably under 25 grams.” The so-called added sugar is the extra sugar added to the food, such as Rock sugar, white sugar, fructose syrup, etc., these sugars have been confirmed by research, which will cause obesity, disturb metabolism and so on.

The sharp decline in the performance of carbonated beverages indicates that the entire wave of healthy consumption in China and the world is coming.

Take a popular carbonated drink, the sugar content per 100 ml is 10.6 grams, a bottle of 500 ml, the sugar content reaches 53 grams, exceeding the sugar intake recommended by the dietary guidelines.

According to a report released by the China Social Science Research Center of Peking University in 2015, compared with 2002, the overweight and obesity rates of children and adolescents aged 7 to 17 in China increased by 2.4 and 3.1 percentage points respectively in 2013, while those in rural areas increased respectively. 5.1 and 3.6 percentage points are higher than the city.

Also in 2013, the Beijing Municipal Education Commission blocked a carbonated beverage outside the primary and secondary school campus with a ban: the notice clearly stipulates that primary and secondary schools are not allowed to sell food and beverages that are not conducive to health such as carbonated beverages.

China has not yet made further demands on measures and standards for food sugar reduction at the national level, but some countries have already done so.

In January 2014, Mexico levied a tax of 1 peso/liter on carbonated beverages, which was “known” for its unhealthy eating habits and serious obesity. It became the first country in the world to levy a “sugar tax”. In just a few years, this new tax has become a global phenomenon. In the past 2017, many countries including the United Kingdom and France have joined the ranks of “sugar tax”, and taxation plans for more than a dozen countries have been discussed in the parliament.

Image source: Caijing Magazine

In some health research institutions, sugary drinks represented by carbonated drinks are one of the main causes of obesity. In many countries, the most prominent group of obesity is the poor. They consume more high-sugar and high-calorie foods, and they are more sensitive to price. The “sugar tax” imposes narrower sales of carbonated beverages.

The sales of carbonated beverages continued to fall, the first reason is because consumers' health awareness has increased. Carbonated drinks are unhealthy, calorie content is too high, and the obesity rate of long-term drinkers will increase significantly. Healthy juices and sodas are much healthier, and the natural sweetness is not comparable to artificial sweeteners.

For 100 years, the innovation of carbonated beverages is really insignificant.

In addition to consumers who are actively or passively away from carbonated beverages for health reasons, the decline in sales of carbonated beverages is also related to their own stagnation.

Carbonated beverages have been around for more than 100 years. Over the past 100 years, human entertainment, communication, work, diet, and so on have undergone tremendous changes. Although the advertising and packaging of carbonated beverages are fancy year by year, the marketing method is often a sample of learning in other industries, but the products it launches have hardly changed in the past 100 years, and are familiar formulas and familiar tastes.


Many beverage companies are already studying the use of zero-calorie stevia instead of sugar.

"Small steps run, trial and error iteration." Wu Xiaobo repeatedly mentioned Tencent's winning method in "Tencent Biography". Carbonated drinks are not easy to sell, and the first thing is the innovation of products. In fact, carbonated drinks have made new attempts in taste, but ultimately ended in failure. Since then, there have been no other explosives.

Even the Wahaha boss Zong Qinghou has also reflected that the beverage companies have not done a good job in product innovation in recent years. The R&D personnel are still waiting to build their cars in the laboratory. The products launched can not meet the demand, so consumers do not buy them. It is difficult to open the market.

For consumers, carbonated drinks are no longer a cool and trendy representative.

In China, there is another reason for the decline in sales of carbonated beverages in addition to health and self-sufficiency.

In the past, the material was not abundant, and the beverage would sell well if it tasted good and thirst. But now it's different. In addition to people who care about health, they choose sugar-free drinks or packaged water. Even people who choose sugar drinks will not choose carbonated drinks.

Timg (1).jpg On the one hand, as the income of Chinese people grows, they can afford and choose other drinks. Although carbonated drinks have not increased in price for 20 years, many people are willing to spend several times the price to buy coffee. Or milk tea.

On the other hand, drinking drinks now is not only for thirst, but also a social behavior. Tea shops and cafes sell not only drinks, but also space and experience.

Timg (5).jpg One more thing to admit is that carbonated drinks are outdated at the spiritual level and are no longer representative of coolness and fashion.

For the 80s, in the era when everyone was drinking Arctic Ocean and blackcurrant drinks, it would be extremely good for anyone to come up with a bottle of carbonated beverage from a foreign brand. After drinking a carbonated drink, many people deliberately made a beggar to make others unhappy, but they are very cool.

Now, it's just a normal drink that can't be normal. According to a report issued by the China Quality Association, carbonated beverages currently rely on consumers' recognition of taste and personal habits to maintain a certain degree of user stickiness. Most of the major consumer groups after 80 and 90 are mostly developed in adolescence. habit.

The impact of consumption upgrades on the sales of carbonated beverages is, first and foremost, that consumers will choose better and healthier things, which is what many people can perceive.

Consumers who are paying more and more attention to healthy eating have gradually “abandoned” carbonated drinks and switched to healthy drinks.

Timg (3).jpg There is also a class of people in the consumption upgrade, like fresh and individual, or something different. A survey of 33 households with annual incomes of more than 400,000 shows that Haitao is largely a product of paying for spiritual needs, and many niche brands are more popular than traditional luxury goods.

The same is true for fast-moving consumer goods such as beverages. A carbonated beverage that has not changed for a hundred years is just a bottle of beverage at the moment. It cannot provide spiritual value other than commodities, nor can it touch the mind of this generation of consumers.

The representatives of cool and fashionable have already become milk tea in this era. Just like the young people who bought the net red milk tea, the first thing is not to drink milk tea, but to quickly take out the mobile phone and take the picture with the lens.


In the 1980s, cola was a fashion, and many local beverage factories produced their own cola.

It can be said that under the joint action of the self (sealing of products) and the era (consumption of consumption, change of health concept), the era of carbonated drinks may be over.