The global functional and flavoured waters market is performing strongly

The global functional and flavoured waters market is performing strongly

Surging sales in Asia-Pacific and Latin American drove global volumes of flavoured and functional waters up by 7.4% to 11bn litres last year, with Europe the only region seeing a fall, according to latest figures. 

A new report by consultancy Zenith Interenational revealed that volume sales in the flavoured segment rose by 7.1% in 2012, while functional waters' sales increased by 7.9%. The sector's global market is now estimated to be worth US$17bn. 

Asia-Pacific saw volumes growth of 26% and value growth of 20%, the report found. The region's market for the sub-sector is now estimated to be worth around $5bn. 

Latin American saw volumes gains of 12% in the period. 

Zenith International chairman Richard Hall said: “With greater global awareness of the need for healthier diets and consumer choices, companies are increasingly presenting flavoured and functional waters as a welcome middle ground between soft drinks and water - offering products with fewer calories than some carbonated beverages and which may add extra interest to plain bottled water." 

The report also noted that China is becoming a “key global force” in flavoured and functional waters with 40% average volume growth since 2010.

Meanwhile, North America saw the market return to growth for the first time since 2008. 

Europe was the only region to experience a drop in market value last year.

Zenith predicts all regions will see growth this year, while the global market value is expected to reach $29bn in 2017. 

The category has come under the spotlight for some brands' claims, with the Coca-Cola Co's Vitaminwater currently the subject of another lawsuit. The company argues that accusations it has made "deceptive and unsubstantiated" claims about the brand are without merit.