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Growth in iced tea outpacing other soft drinks

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Global iced tea consumption exceeded 35 billion litres in 2015, according to a new report by food and drinks consultancy Zenith International.

Since 2010, the market has grown by 44%, well above the 25% rate for all soft drinks. Zenith attributes its strong growth to consumers’ greater health awareness, choosing beverages that offer health benefits and thirst-quenching properties without compromising on taste.

Points highlighted by the 2016 Zenith Global Ready-To-Drink Tea Report include:

  • Asia Pacific has a commanding 72% volume share led by China and Japan, yet the region’s consumption per person is less than half that of North America and only slightly higher than Europe.
  • North America enjoys the highest consumption per person, recording robust growth fuelled by innovation and promotion of the category’s health positioning.
  • Europe’s performance has been mixed, with West Europe witnessing steady growth and East Europe posting a decline, primarily due to reduced consumer purchasing power in some countries and greater price sensitivity.
  • Latin America and Africa Middle East achieved the highest growth rates of over 10% a year between 2010 and 2015.

“Ready to drink tea has multiple attractions for millennial and other adult consumers,” commented Zenith Chairman Richard Hall. “It’s refreshing, light, natural and generally healthy, with a heritage as well as provenance that consumers increasingly value. New lower calorie launches have added extra appeal.”

Zenith forecasts that consumption will continue growing by 4.4% a year to reach almost 44 billion litres by 2020.

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