In recent years, consumer concerns about sugar intake have created a macrotrend of healthier beverages. As a result, the beverage industry has seen natural sweeteners like stevia evolve and become more widely used.
Specific sweeteners show little effect on purchase decision
August 16, 2013
Consumers avoid total sugars more than they avoid any specific sweetener, according to an October 2012 brand-level consumer attitudes and behavior study about food and beverages from Mintel Research Consultancy (MRC), Chicago, that was commissioned by the Corn Refiners Association (CRA), Washington, D.C.
In the ballad “The Sweetest Thing,” the pop rock band U2 sang about how love is the sweetest thing, but when it comes to the beverage market, the sweetest thing also is the biggest thing. Across 13 ingredient categories, sweeteners accounted for 85 percent of the 46.4 million tons of ingredients used in beverages in 2011, according to an April 2013 report by Chicago-based Euromonitor International titled “Beverage Ingredients: Trends and Influences.”
Whether it’s to enhance flavor profiles, reduce calories or to mask the off-notes of added vitamins and minerals, beverage manufacturers continue to turn to sweeteners to help produce products that appeal to consumers’ taste preferences.