Insights from the 12th Global Bottled Water CongressNovember 9th, 2015 | Posted by in Beverages | Bottled water | Events | Soft drinks | Water
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