The first trend, ‘Created for Kids’, could see manufacturers capitalise on creating more soft drinks that are tailor-made to suit the tastes of children, who are the biggest consumers of soft drinks.
Second, there was an opportunity to motivate more adults to choose soft drinks over hot beverages like tea and coffee, the review stated.
The third trend, ‘Inspired Life Choices’, suggested nudging consumers to choose low- or no-sugar soft drinks. This could be achieved, despite passing on the cost of the sugar levy, by creating a tiered pricing structure for beverages based on their sugar content.
Tiered pricing structure
The next trend, ‘Elevated Food Moments’, highlighted the possibilities of linking soft drinks with specific meals or food. Work could be done by producers to make consumers choose a drink with their lunch or dinner by promoting a specific beverage that went with it, said Britvic.
Finally, Britvic promoted the idea of creating social experiences – memorable moments when out with friends in bars or restaurants – with soft drinks, especially for 16- to 34-year-olds.
John Campbell, commercial operations director at Britvic, said: “The consumer landscape and the way people live their lives is fundamentally changing and now is the time for the category to evolve.
“Soft drinks must adapt in order to maintain, but also grow their relevancy among consumers. At Britvic, we want to share our insights with customers and work together to identify new opportunities to grow the category, all by getting the nation to drink differently.”
Soft drinks sales
UK soft drinks sales were worth more than £15.2bn in 2017 – up 1.4% compared with the previous year – according to the report, produced by Britvic in partnership with market research company IRI.
Foodservice sales were worth £6.9bn, up 2.1% from 2016, while convenience store sales grew 2.3% to £2.1bn year-on-year.
Soft drinks were one of the top-performing categories across the convenience retail channel in 2017, growing by 2.3% and maintaining their position as the largest segment in terms of total units bought.
Convenience sales of diet or low-sugar soft drinks grew by 12.3% to £446m. While standard, non-diet drinks still had the largest share of value at £1.6bn, sales did fall by £1.6m (0.1%).