Soft drinks continue to be one of the key growth drivers in the UK on- and off-trade, as new research released today shows that volume growth of soft drinks sales eclipsed gin growth by 2.4% to reach 14.6 billion litres in 2001. "Combined with a hot summer, high advertising spends and the continued success of functional drinks the UK recorded unprecedented sales in the soft drinks market over the review period 1997-2001," said Trudi Griggs, spokeswoman for Euromonitor who have published the findings.