The latest issue of Beverage World magazine features commentary from SDR Director Ben Rudman on the state of the beverage industry as it experiences a growing “conscious-consumer movement.” In the article, Ben discusses the current trends that he believes will continue to play a role in future industry growth.
According to Ben, the growing “conscious-consumer movement” is expected to gain ground in 2016 as shifting consumer appetites go mainstream. These are consumers who desire local, fresh, healthy and responsibly sourced products and ingredients. The demand for organic and natural juices and sodas is continually increasing while consumers have also begun to seek out convenient ways to consume protein. Meanwhile, in the adult beverage world, the conscious-consumer movement manifests in the growing popularity of craft beer. Market research by Mintel highlighted the many ways that craft beer drinkers think their choice of beverage reflects their identity—and the big brewers are taking notice.
Some industry giants such as the Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, Coca-Cola and Budweiser have already began to pursue this trend with their acquisitions of specialty drink companies. Small companies have been able to capitalize on this trend due to their implementation of faster innovation cycles, enabling them to develop beverages that are on trend in a timelier manner than many larger companies. Companies with strong, loyal followings, that can also provide distribution synergies to larger companies, make for mouth-watering targets.
“Consumers of all demographics and income levels increasingly want to identify and connect with brands that exemplify ethics and values that mirror their own,” Ben explains. Beverage companies that are responsive to this increasing consumer consciousness figure to reap significant benefits.
To read the full article, check out the latest issue of Beverage World.