Continued interest in health and wellness, back to nature and proactive health trends have resulted in consumers turning to products that boast a natural, healthy halo. Although bottled water has experienced the most notable gains from these trends, bagged, loose-leaf and ready-to-drink (RTD) teas also have benefited from their associations as better-for-you products.
Despite the fact that the tea market has remained relatively stagnant, category growth is largely a result of the performance of the RTD tea segment, says Gary Hemphill, managing director of research at New York-based Beverage Marketing Corporation (BMC). “The overall tea market has been essentially flat, but growth is coming from the RTD category,” he says. “The RTD tea category is experiencing mid-single digit growth driven by the category’s healthy halo, innovation and strong performance in the super-premium segment. … We believe the RTD tea category will continue to have healthy growth in the years ahead due to its healthy positioning and assortment of strong brands in the category.”