A functional beverage is a drink which has confirmed health or other benefits. There are essentially three types of drinks; sports, health and energy.
They are typically consumed by students studying for exams, busy professionals and sports people.
There are several brands now available in supermarkets, service stations, bars, restaurants and other outlets, and the number seems to be increasing, with a surge of new varieties taking over the market. Interestingly it is the Australian made brands that are now dominating the market according to the latest review.
IBISWorld is a large market research organisation and has recently released results of a review of sales of functional drinks in Australia.
According to the report from IBISWorld, revenue in 2013-14 increased by around 2.5 percent to $1.1 billion and is forecast to get to $1.3 billion by 2018-19.
The IBISWorld General Manager, Mr Dan Ruthven said; “Whether you are a student, sportsperson or someone trying to balance work with other commitments, chances are that you have reached for a functional drink designed to boost alertness, improve digestion or enhance on-the-field performance. Increasingly, this drink is less likely to be a traditional coffee or caffeine-rich cola, but rather an energy drink or other functional beverage.”
The energy drinks have grown from about 30 percent of the functional drink market in 2008-09 to nearly 40 percent in 2013-14.
The sports drink segment has actually had a decrease in the functional drink market from 58 percent in 2008-09 to about 49 percent in 2013-14. IBISWorld believe this is due to reduced innovation during that time, although it is forecast that there will be sales of around $458 million by 2018-19.
By 2018-19 the health drink segment is forecast to be at least 58 percent of the functional drink market.
Mr Ruthven said; “Consumers are increasingly using health-related functional beverages as supplements to aid digestion, decrease hunger and manage weight. Health drinks, such as probiotic drinks and others with antioxidants or herbal ingredients, are expected to become increasingly popular with health-conscious, time-poor professionals.”
Written by Rachelle Williams, The Green Food Safety Coach.