Coffee, healthy beverages dominate new product trials

American consumers tried Starbucks Coffee, Vitaminwater, V8 and Sobe more than any other beverages in January, according to a survey by Market Force Information Inc., Louisville, Colo. The study showed that in-store merchandising drives new product trials, and brand name coffee and healthy drinks dominate new product trials at grocery outlets. Market Force received responses from nearly 6,000 consumers to shed light on which brands drove the most new product trials and why.

Beverages received the largest number of brand name mentions of any category sampled with Coca-Cola’s Vitaminwater, Campbell’s V8 and PepsiCo’s Sobe identified as the top three new brands consumers recalled purchasing in the past 30 days. PepsiCo brands led the beverage category’s mentions with Pepsi, Mountain Dew, Sierra Mist and Gatorade making the list. Coca-Cola’s Fuze brand also had a strong showing, being mentioned almost as frequently as Pepsi and Mountain Dew, Market Force reported.

Fifty-two percent of the 2,000 consumers who responded to a portion of the survey said they had tried a new brand or flavor of coffee or tea from a grocer in the past 30 days. Starbucks Coffee had the highest response in the coffee and tea category, followed by Dunkin’ Donuts coffee. Celestial Seasonings Tea and Folgers coffee also made the list.

Driving new product trials were in-store displays and promotions, such as coupons. Of the products they stock at home, 52 percent of respondents said they had bottled water, followed closely by 49 percent who said they had Coca-Cola products. Pepsi products were stocked at home by 32 percent of survey takers and bottled or boxed juices received similar numbers with 30 percent.

The survey was conducted in January among Market Force’s network of more than 300,000 consumers regarding the trial of new products in consumer product goods categories. The pool of 6,000 respondents ranged in age from 19 to 72 years old and reflected a spectrum of income levels. Approximately 75 percent were women, who are the primary household shoppers, and half had children at home.

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