Sales and consumption of bottled water in the U.S. continues to rise, according to statistics released by the International Bottled Water Association (IBWA) and Beverage Marketing Corporation (BMC).In 2007, total bottled water volume was 8.8 billion gallons, a 6.9 per cent increase over 2006, and the 2007 bottled water per capita consumption of 29.3 gallons increased nearly two gallons, from 27.6 gallons per capita the previous year. Additionally, the wholesale dollar sales for bottled water exceeded $11.7 billion in 2007, a 7.8 per cent increase over the $10.8 billion in 2006.
“U.S. residents’ unabated thirst for bottled water can be attributed to several factors,” said John G. Rodwan, Jr., editorial director at Beverage Marketing Corporation. “Many consumers recognize it to be healthy, safe, and convenient. It’s a versatile product, suitable for consumption at any time of day and need not be kept cold, like soft drinks or juice, or warm, like coffee or tea. As far as ready-to-drink commercial beverages go, it’s relatively inexpensive, and, with competitive pricing, it is increasingly affordable for consumers.”
BMC continues to foresee bottled water surpassing carbonated soft drinks (CSDs) to become the largest beverage category by volume within the next five to seven years.
“While all beverages have their role in a marketplace with an abundance of drink choices,” says Joe Doss, IBWA president and CEO. “Consumers are choosing bottled water as a refreshing, healthy, hydrating beverage and as an alternative to others because it does not contain calories, caffeine, sugar, artificial colors, alcohol or other ingredients.”