Did you really need Jamie Oliver to tell you that junk food and fizzy drinks are bad for your health? Apparently many did! See how the soft drink industry has changed in the last decade.
Healthy natural drinks such as smoothies, fruit juices, coconut water and probiotic drinks, are part of a specific market segment within the soft drink industry; an industry which seems to grow year after year. In fact, according to the 2011 soft drinks report, the soft drink industry in the UK has seen a year of growth with 235 litres average consumption per person and an impressive 4.1% growth in volume. The segment represented by healthy natural drinks addresses the problems derived from the most recent developments which affects life on a daily basis such as an increase in stress levels and obesity. The predominant consumption of fizzy, sugary drinks and junk food in the last decade in the UK created new health concerns and challenges which over time resulted into a shift of consumer trends. It is estimated that in Britain nearly a quarter of adults and nearly a fifth of children are obese after increases in the last decade. This is due not only to what is eaten but also to what is drunken and to a lack of exercise. As the Food Standards Agency has lately taken a stricter stance on the matter, the UK soft drinks industry and foreign manufactures are responding by introducing into the market, no chemicals added drinks, reduced sugar drinks and by adding more fruits to smoothies and juices. 100% natural juices are more expensive and as consumers are still watching their budgets after the 2008 global recession, they tend to switch to private labels which provide them with a healthy and cost-effective alternative. This particular segment has been selected as coming from a culture where healthy nutrition is ingrained into the culture, it is interesting to see how consumers’ trends have changed in the UK mainly influenced by the media and celebrities wanted to change the “junk food and drink ” mentality. Around only 15 years ago, sugary and fizzy drinks were almost or the only soft drinks available on the UK market together with sugary flavoured waters. Being healthy was not relevant for the majority of population. With Jamie Oliver becoming famous and campaigning towards a healthier lifestyle there was a boom in healthy food and drinks sales. Being healthy has nowadays become a major concern although, it seems to be confined to upper and middle classes only. It seems almost absurd that a developed country, one of the main leaders in innovation such as the UK has only recently discovered the benefits of healthy nutrition.
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