The State of the Beverage – Year 2019

It has been two years since we reported on beverage trends after attending the Beverage Forum held in  Chicago, IL in 2017.  For the first time, bottled water captured over 50% of the beverage gross sales market and the hottest trend at that time (and currently) is to reduce sugar content in beverages.

For 2019, the consumer continues to drive the evolution in beverages. The leading trend is how the consumers want to manage their energy levels throughout the day. Consumers have become less tolerant of drinks that give quick jolts causing repeated up and down effects. They also want to drink beverages that give them an immediately feeling of the energy effect.

The new term coined is “stacked function” which means consumers drink a variety of beverage categories throughout the day. In explaining “stacked function”, managerial officials of the First Beverage Group indicated their typical consumer is still interested in drinking coffee or a caffeinated beverage in the morning, enjoying a matcha tea in the afternoon, guzzling a energy performance drink during a sport event, and then winding down at the end of the day with a final beverage that gives them mental focus and does not disrupt a restful night of sleep. According to First Bev investment group, the concept of “stacked function” opens capital investments for a variety of beverage categories while encouraging consumers to enter into a behavior of sequencing their beverage choices throughout the day. We wonder whether or not the typical consumer will embrace the sequencing concept such that the drive-thru lanes at the coffee shops will no longer be busy at 4 p.m.

Hold on … according to the beverage marketing experts, energy and hydration may not be enough. Another boost may be desired which explains why both manufacturers and investors are dashing into specialty additives for beverages these days such as CBD and mushrooms. One First Bev official warns, however, that taste is paramount and the consumer does not want to wonder about the ingredient or chemical taste that they experienced.

The Managing Partner of First Bev, Jack Belsito, also said a great truth … “Nothing is more functional than water … the ultimate functional business. Water is the only thing we need, yet there are 1,000’s of deviations”.

Our opinion is that Watt-Ahh already has the distinction in water, having  “stacked function” in a single bottle … giving energy both throughout and any time during the day. Watt-Ahh gives immediate energy, hydration plus a boost from  added electrons that support the mitochondria. Hey, First Bev, are you listening?

Source of Information About 2019 Beverage Trends: BevNet Taste Radio, Joe Angiuli, VP, Jack Belsito, Managing Partner and Bob Nakasone, Managing Director of First Beverage Group interviewed by Ray Latif of BevNET on May 3, 2019.