Bottled waters recovery continues apace

Bottled water's recovery continues apace

UK bottled water volumes grew by 3.3% last year as the industry continued its recovery from the 2006 slump, new figures have revealed.

Bottle sizes under ten litres, which accounted for 88% of total sales, increased volumes by 4.7% in 2012 year-on-year, according to Zenith International’s 2013 UK Bottled Water market report released last week. Sales by value were not detailed by Zenith. 

Meanwhile, the report showed that Highland Spring has leapfrogged Evian as the UK's biggest-selling bottled water brand. The Scottish brand sold 200m litres last year, up by 9%. Third highest seller was Buxton, followed by Volvic and Nestlé Pure Life. 

“After being held back in the early stages of the recent recession, bottled water has regained momentum,” Zenith chairman Richard Hall said. “Consumers are now viewing more positively its key benefits of healthy hydration, on-the-go convenience, competitive pricing and environmental credentials.”

Declines in the bottled water cooler market speeded up, as customers increasingly turned to mains-supply water filters, the report said. Cooler volumes dropped by 4.7% year-on-year compared to a 3.1% decline in 2011.

Zenith said the overall bottled water market will increase by 15% by 2017. 

Last week a report from Britvic said bottled water sales last year proved more robust than squash sales as wet weather dampened demand.