Beverage Industry

Drinking And Living Well

December 1, 2005

Drinking And Living Well
By ELIZABETH FUHRMAN
Fat fighters, immunity defenders and nutritious knights safeguard consumers’ health
Tis really isn’t the season for consumers to think about health and wellness drinks, but many consumers still are, and first thing next year, they will for sure. Despite obesity concerns, the weight control and nutritional beverage category saw a 10.1 percent decline for the year ending in October, to $772.1 million, according to Information Resources Inc., Chicago. This is a category that included low-carbohydrate beverages that were big in 2004, but saw sales drops well before Atkins Nutritionals Inc. announced it filed for bankruptcy protection in August.
But this is not the case for the broad-ranging health and wellness category not attached to a specific diet or trend. According to SPINS, San Francisco, the latest data indicates the total functional beverage market — including isotonics, lifestyle/wellness drinks, meal replacements and medicinal teas — grew 18 percent during the past year, and is currently posting sales of $1.8 billion, which includes beverages sold in both the natural and conventional channels of distribution. Of the total $1.8 billion, the lifestyle/wellness category accounts for the majority of the total, and is likely to approach $1 billion in sales this year.
In turn, many low-calorie, fitness, sports, health and nutrition beverages are helping to reinvigorate their respective categories. For example, enhanced bottled water continues to be a growing category of consumer interest. PepsiCo’s Propel Fitness Water built on its brand equity with the introduction of the first national enhanced water to be considered a “good source of calcium.” Rolling out in January, Propel Calcium will be available in both 500-ml. and 700-ml. sizes in three flavors: Mango, Mandarin Orange and Mixed Berry. Propel Calcium contains 10 percent of the daily recommended intake of calcium per 8-ounce serving. The source of calcium is FruitCal, a patented calcium source comprised of calcium and two organic acids: citric acid and malic acid.
Like the original Propel Fitness Water, Propel Calcium is a low-calorie, vitamin-enhanced fitness water line that is flavored to help active people stay better hydrated. “With Propel Calcium, fitness and sports nutrition experts have told us we’re providing an important new benefit for our active consumers,” said Marie Devlin, vice president of new products for The Gatorade Co., in a release. “Calcium is an under-consumed nutrient and one that’s critical to maintaining strong bones, which benefit our consumers’ active lifestyles. ”Bottled water, as an already perceived healthy product, offers another outlet for beverage companies to offer weight-loss opportunities.
Bryn Mawr, Pa.-based Creative Enterprises International Inc., marketer of Jana Natural European Artesian Water, launched Jana Skinny Water in August. Made with the same water as Jana Water, which is bottled by Jamnica d.d., a division of The Agrokor Group, South Eastern Europe’s largest bottled water manufacturer, Skinny Water includes the ingredient Super CitriMax. Drinking Skinny Water 30 to 60 minutes before each meal helps suppress the body’s appetite, increase metabolism and block carbohydrate absorption, the company says. Skinny Water is all-natural, containing no preservatives, caffeine, calories or sugar, and is ephedra-free.
Global sales of health and wellness beverages
  Forecasted 2005
(Sales in millions)
*Total organic beverage drinks $2,401.9
Organic fruit/vegetable juice$1,073.4
Organic elixirs$42.8
Organic concentrates$248.6
organic hot drinks$1,037.0
*Total fortified/functional beverages $39,905.9
Fortified/functional fruit/vegetable juice$6,593.4
Fortified/functional sports drinks$15,146.6
Fortified/functional energy drinks$6,166.8
Fortified/functional elixirs$721.1
Fortified/functional bottled water$3,096.6
Fortified/functional concentrates$1,262.7
Fortified/functional RTD tea$3,506.9
fortified/functional hot drinks$3,311.3
Fortified/functional tea$77.8
Fortified/functional other hot drinks$3,233.5
*Total better for you beverages $31,703.6
Better for you soft drinks$28,594.0
Better for you hot drinks$3,109.6
*Total naturally healthy beverages $69,152.6
Naturally healthy soft drinks $59,772.1
Naturally healthy hot drinks $9,380.6
Source: Euromonitor International
Ardea Beverage Co., Minneapolis, continued to add to its line of nutrient-enhanced beverages, which already included Energize, Flex, Focus and Calm, with the additions of Radiant, Slender and Immune Nutrisodas this year. Released in November, Immune Nutrisoda contains “meaningful levels” of vitamins, herbs and amino acid — such as the amino acid l-arginine, vitamins A, E, B2, B3, B6 and B12, echinacea, zinc and selenium — to help boost the body’s immune defenses, the company says. With tangerine and lime natural fruit flavors, Immune has 15 calories and no sugar, carbohydrates, caffeine, sodium or aspartame.
Slender Nutrisoda, which launched in April, provides nutrients such as garcinia cambogia, which may reduce appetite; amino acids l-carnitine and l-tyrosine, which assist in the breakdown of fat; and calcium, which helps the body metabolize fat, the company says. Radiant Nutrisoda, which was released in February, offers ingredients that may help improve skin’s natural elasticity and firmness for healthy, youthful-looking skin, the company says.
According to industry reports, Coca-Cola formed a collaboration with Nestlé, Glendale, Calif., to launch Enviga. Positioned as a diet drink, the beverage will contain green tea and caffeine, and will be described as having the ability to burn 50 to 100 calories just by drinking it, as well as the ability to speed metabolism. The launch is scheduled for early next year. Nestlé has applied for the Enviga trademark, which covers “nutritional and dietary supplements,” “energizing and energetic drinks,” “green tea” and “isotonic beverages.” BI