Worsening economic conditions have hit sales for smoothie producer Innocent Drinks over the last six months.  

Like-for-like sales have fallen by around 20% in value in the last six months, Innocent's commercial director, Giles Brook, confirmed to just-drinks today (25 September).

The drop has been blamed on declining consumer spending power, largely due to the rising cost of bills and food staples, as part of a general economic downturn.

News of Innocent's sales dip comes barely a month after Nestle and Boost Juice Bars said they were discontinuing their new range of Boosted Smoothies in the UK. They blamed sector decline for the decision.

"We have had seven years of major growth, but both Innocent and the smoothie category are not exempt from the credit crunch," said Innocent's Brook.

But, he added that Innocent's market share had increased, suggesting some competitors in the smoothie category have fared worse. "In the last four months our share has grown strongly, and we are now back up over 60%."

He said Innocent planned to launch new promotion campaigns in the near future, and said the firm remained confident.

"We are at the heart of macro-consumer trends [in soft drinks]. What we've got to do is communicate the value of smoothies, such as high fruit content."