Opinion from global food and drink experts, Zenith Global
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On the night of Wednesday 21 October, the 2015 Global Bottled Water Awards were presented during a gala dinner at the iconic Myriad Hotel in Lisbon, Portugal.

The Awards were a highlight of Zenith’s 12th Global Bottled Water Congress, organised in conjunction with media partners BeverageDaily.com, Beverfood and the International Bottled Water Association.

There were over 100 entries from 22 countries, demonstrating novelty in 11 categories including packaging and design, marketing, sustainability and community initiatives.

The international judging panel recognised products and concepts that push the boundaries of innovation and offer measurable benefits to consumers and the environment, setting high standards for the global packaged water industry.

What the Award winners had to say…

“I was delighted that Nestlé Waters won two awards in such an important contest, which rewards the best achievements in the bottled water industry. That was a clear recognition of the success of our work to create value for the whole category.”

Paolo Sangiorgi, Senior Vice President- European Markets, Nestlé Waters


“It is always nice to learn that other people, especially experts in the field, believe that your product has potential. I am glad that I decided to enter the awards.”

Staffan Palsson, Managing Director, CapAble


“I am grateful to the people at Zenith for scouring the globe and finding us. To have an international panel select our effort, out of the many very worthy initiatives that have been nominated, honours both the Philippines and the work we do at Hope.”

Nanette Medved-Po, Founder, Friends of Hope


“This is a great reward for all the effort that has gone into this project. It is an honour to be distinguished among so many good initiatives for our sustainability focus. Congratulations also to the organisers for an amazing Awards night and a great Congress. A big thank you from Coca-Cola HBC Greece and Natural Mineral Water AVRA.”

Panagiota Tempelopoulou, Senior Brand Manager-Avra, Coca-Cola 3E


“We are happy to receive great recognition for our unique and precious water with this award!”

Karline Scheer, Brand Concept Manager, Iceberg Water


“For us the award is very important as it adds credit to our plans and distribution ambitions in 2016 onwards.”

Edward Woolner, Founder and Managing Director, Powerful Water Company

 

 What the judges had to say…

“The program was well run and there were lots of very creative marketing efforts and products.”

Joseph Doss, President and CEO, International Bottled Water Association


“I was truly fascinated by the level of innovation in the industry. It was great to see all contributions, from long-established companies and newcomers across the world.”

Esther Renfrew, Market Intelligence Director, Zenith International


“The awards were a great showcase of the ideas and innovations in the bottled water category, from natural mineral and spring water brands to functional and flavoured products.”

Rachel Arthur, Reporter, Beverage Daily

 

For the full list of finalists and winners please click here.

 

2015 Global Bottled Water Awards

2015 Global Bottled Water Awards

On 20-22 October 2015, Zenith International held the 12th Global Bottled Water Congress in Lisbon, Portugal. This year’s theme was Added Value and the Congress saw some fantastic speakers discussing a range of market developments, issues and innovation. Each presentation and panel discussion was packed with ideas and insights.

The overall message was highly positive. The sector’s growth observed in recent years remains strong and this is forecast to continue. The emerging economies will help drive volume increases, but the sector needs to lead in innovation, technology, packaging and social and environmental responsibility to ensure it provides a product that fits with the opportunity. As one speaker noted, “it is imperative to get occasion, brand, pack, price and channel correct to succeed in each market.”

It would be impossible to discuss all of the topics covered in one post, but below are some of my highlights:

• Bottled water continues to see excellent worldwide growth. It is the largest soft drink sector (excluding tea) and is expected to grow by 7% in 2015.
• South East Asia now consumes one third of the world’s soft drinks. It has a growing middle class (estimated to be 400m) with increasing spending power.
• The industry has to continue to lead on social and environmental responsibility, especially in emerging markets.
• Branding is key. Consumers across all markets, no matter their spending power, want to purchase great brands.
• Social media are making the world more connected and millennials want to discover brands rather than being told what to buy. They look for authentic, local stories.

The Congress finished with an entrepreneur shoot-out, which confirmed that innovation is well and truly alive in the sector. We saw water with the addition of spirulina, water with added vitamins, a new type of sports water as well as improved closure technology. As always, these new concepts sparked debate about how the sector continues to move forward and push boundaries.

Another undeniable highlight of the Congress was the presentation of the 2015 Global Bottled Water Awards at a Gala Dinner, with more than 100 entries from 22 countries. It was fantastic to see such an array of products that continue to innovate and my congratulations go out to all the finalists and winners.

Overall, another fantastic event packed with new ideas and insights. Hope to see you next year!

Simon Johnson- Senior Consultant at Zenith International

For more information on the event, click here

 

12th Global Bottled Water Congress

12th Global Bottled Water Congress

Food waste = Water waste

January 17th, 2013 | Posted by Ric Horobin in Environmental | Food | Water - (0 Comments)

Last week, the BBC covered a story about the amount of food that is wasted globally. Estimates are that around 30% – 50% of all food produced is wasted; this amounts to around two billion tonnes of food.

Now, that’s a lot of food, but the impact on global water resources was not widely reported. My earlier blog post about the export bans imposed by some Middle East countries gave some idea about the volume of water embedded “virtually” in products. The Institution of Mechanical Engineers, the organisation that undertook the study into levels of wastage, gives details of the impact this has on global water resources.

The total volume of water extracted around the world this year will be approximately 3,800 cubic kilometres , and about 70% of this is used for growing food. or 2,700 cubic kilometres. So, if between 30% and 50% of food is wasted, the most basic assessment would be that the same volume of water is wasted. 800 to 1350 cubic kilometres of water. That’s a staggeringly large volume. I can’t comprehend what that means in the usual colloquial measure of water volume – Olympic swimming pools (up to 540,000,000). It’s 182 time the volume of Loch Ness. And this doesn’t include water used in processing foods.

Now, clearly it’s much more complicated than this, because some foods require significantly more water than others, and there is no research on the type of food wasted, and some of that water would run off into the seas and oceans anyway, but that aside, the volume of water lost is huge.

What is interesting is that in most cases, the link to water is only mentioned briefly in the media. I think this will change.

Dr Ric Horobin

Water & Environment Director at Zenith International

I’d love to hear your comments and views. Follow me on twitter @riczenith.

Alternatively if you’d like to contact me directly regarding how we at Zenith International can help your business email me: rhorobin@zenithinternational.com.

 

Last year I discussed the water export bans from UAE, Saudi Arabia and Oman. At BevME in December, I took that theme further and gave a presentation on my view of what the future holds. Here’s a summary:

There have been bans on exporting water from Saudi Arabia and UAE since September, and there is also now a ban on exporting produce grown in open fields from Saudi Arabia. I think this gives an indication of what the future holds.

Water exports are obvious. You can actually see the water leaving the country. The term ‘virtual water’ is now often used to describe the water used in the production of a product, and this is much less obvious. The virtual water in a tomato, for example, is not just the water physically in the fruit as it is exported, which is small. It includes all the water used to irrigate the tomato field which is lost through evaporation. A very rough back of the envelope estimate is that a single tomato can contain up to 13 litres of virtual water. So, the impact of ceasing exports of just a single tomato is that 13 litres of water are available for another use.

I believe that decisions like this will be made more and more often, particularly in Middle East where most countries are in the top 20 ranking of water stressed countries. It is not straightforward to calculate the virtual water content of individual products, but what is clear is that countries like Saudi Arabia are taking the issue of water seriously. At the Saudi Water and Power Forum in Jeddah last December, there was even discussion about stopping centre pivot irrigation systems. The impact on food production would be significant. The very fact that such a debate is being held gives some indication of the pressures on groundwater in this rapidly developing and arid region.

Dr Ric Horobin

Water & Environment Director at Zenith International

I’d love to hear your comments and views. Follow me on twitter @riczenith.

Alternatively if you’d like to contact me directly regarding how we at Zenith International can help your business email me: rhorobin@zenithinternational.com.

In March, I wrote about the United Arab Emirates banning bottled water exports; this followed a similar ban in Saudi Arabia. It sounds like it might be spreading. Oman has announced that it is also looking at banning exports of bottled water.

Dr Abdullah bin Ali Al Hinai, Acting Director-General of Industry at the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, gave details of the export volumes and short falls via the Oman News Agency*.

There are some interesting numbers here… The Director-General gives figures of 14 million litres of bottled water exported from Oman in 2010. This is just 10% of the volume exported from the UAE in the same year.  I’ve had a quick look at water use in Oman, where the total water use is estimated to be 1.5 billion cubic meters of water every year, increasing to 1.7 billion cubic meters by 2020. So bottled water exports represent just 0.001% of total water use.

Now, I raise this not in defence of an export ban of bottled water, but more to highlight the point that other industries that use significantly greater volumes of water, such as the dairy industry, may be targeted next. Bottled water is an obvious example of water being exported, however the water contained in other products (the virtual water) is much less obvious but may become significantly more important as pressure on resources increases. The consequences of this could be bans on exports of dairy products.

As always, i’ll be watching the next steps very closely.

Dr. Ric Horobin

Water & Environment Director at Zenith International

P.S. I’m sure this and other hot industry topics will be discussed at Zenith International’s upcoming Global Bottled Water Congress taking place from 8th – 10th October in Barcelona.  You can review the Congress and book your place online here.

I’d love to hear your comments and views. follow me on twitter @riczenith.

Alternatively if you’d like to contact me directly regarding how we at Zenith International can help your business email me: rhorobin@zenithinternational.com.

*Source: Times of Oman. You can read the full story here.

 

A couple of weeks ago, the UAE banned all exports of groundwater from the country. The ban is aimed at protecting the country’s reducing groundwater stocks, clearly a reasonable aim. It has now clarified that this includes bottled waters produced from groundwater sources. This is effective immediately, although the government has given companies six months to comply.

I’ve been looking at this in a bit more detail.

The annual bottled water volume exported from the UAE in 2010 was 140 million litres. Not all of this is from groundwater, but let’s assume it is for now. I wondered what this meant in terms of the overall groundwater abstraction. There are various sources of information on this including from the Food and Agriculture section at the UN and also from the UAE government. Total groundwater abstraction in 2010 was around 2,000,000 million litres. So, the exports of bottled water are 0.007% of total abstraction.

Now, obviously every little bit helps, but I can’t help thinking that the virtual water component of some agricultural products which are exported is orders of magnitude higher. I’ll have a look at some other industries over the next couple of weeks.

 

 

Parts of the UK are now officially in a state of drought and the EA is warning that more regions will follow, with the situation being potentially worse than in 1976 (although I can’t really remember that…). I’ve been asked a few times recently whether this will impact the food manufacturing sector. So, what are the implications for industry? There are a series of steps water companies can take, depending on the seriousness of the situation.

Initially, water companies can apply for drought permits, which can allow normal abstraction restrictions to be relaxed to ensure continuity of supply – so environmental protection rules are relaxed in times of need.

Second come ordinary drought orders, which restrict use of water for certain activities specified in the Drought Direction 2011. This includes, for example, washing vehicles, using hosepipes and dust supression. In addition, the EA can restrict abstraction from rivers and groundwater where deemed necessary.

Finally, emergency drought orders can be enforced. These allows water companies to restrict water use for any use that they consider to be inappropriate. This is where they could legally stop businesses using water, but it is highly unlikely to happen, particularly for food and beverage manufacturers.

Of course, if you have your own supply, there may be practical limitations to what you can supply should groundwater or river levels fall considerably.

You can get more information on this from Defra here: http://www.defra.gov.uk/environment/quality/water/resources/drought/

News from the Middle East shows the importance of water in the region. The UAE has recently banned the export of groundwater. The full press release is available here.

This comes about after a study by the Ministry of Environment and Water shows a decline in groundwater levels and subsequent depletion of water resources as a result of exports.

Reports from Qatar suggest it is concerned that this will result in rising prices for bottled water, as Saudi Arabia has also stopped exports of water.

I’m unclear from the press release whether this applies to companies using groundwater in beverages that are then exported, but the indications from Qatar are that it will. I’m sure this will become more of an issue in the future.