The UK bottled water industry reported substantial growth in 2011 with a 2.8% increase in annual sales, accumulating a total of over 1.8 billion litres volume sold.
This increase marks positive times in a tough economic climate for manufacturers, responsible for an estimated 2,000 employees, with further reports showing that approximately half of all GB households are buying into the bottled water category and doing so more frequently than in 2010.
This performance has also influenced the soft drink category, with bottled water contributing 20.9% of the volume growth in soft drinks in 2011. In retail terms alone, bottled water has a 14.9% volume share of soft drinks annually – with a seasonal peak of 16.4% in the summer as shoppers opt for immediate forms of hydration when the temperature rises.
Kinvara Carey, general manager of the Natural Hydration Council, commented: “Consumers continue to value the naturally-sourced bottled water offering. With no calories or sugar, naturally sourced bottled water is providing consumers with a healthy hydration choice at a time when there is a continued consumer and media focus on health and wellbeing. We have seen particularly strong growth in the impulse channel as consumers look for convenient and healthy hydration on-the-go.”