Content of the study:
The bottled water market - France

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1.1. Presentation and definition of the market

In France, the activities related to the consumption of bottled water include still water (spring water, mineral water and water made drinkable by treatment), carbonated water and flavored water.

The global market is experiencing sustained growth, thanks to population growth and the development of emerging countries, which are consuming more and more bottled water. Sales are expected to grow at a CAGR of 9.99% between 2017 and 2021.

European markets, such as the French market, are more developed and therefore experience lower growth. However, bottled water benefits from an image of quality and safety that ensures its popularity among the population, and the rise of flavored beverages to replace sodas allows players to reinvent themselves.

Like the global market, the French bottled water market is concentrated around historical and international leaders such as Danone Eaux France, Nestlé Waters France and Neptune (a subsidiary of the Alma group) whose Cristaline brand is the market leader. The distribution of bottled water is mainly carried out through supermarkets .

The players have to face two major obstacles: the ecological argument and the price argument. Without recycling, bottled water has a considerable impact on the environment because of its plastic container. The market players must therefore face up to the increased competition from tap water consumption, which is more environmentally responsible and much more economical.

Numerous innovations are therefore being developed to reduce the carbon footprint of water bottles, and to promote their growth. Marketing efforts to promote the nutritional qualities of these products are also constant and aim to justify their higher price.

1.2. Strong growth in world consumption

The global bottled water market reached a value of US$ *** billion in ****. This market is expected to grow at a CAGR of *.*% between **** and ****.

The CAGR of the major global markets will be as follows:

Bottled water compound annual growth rate (***) World, ****, in % Source: ****

This graph shows the growth rate of ...

1.3. A growing French market

The French market continues to grow, despite its maturity. Between the end of November **** and the end of November ****, sales of bottled water increased by *.*% in value to €*.* billion. The data is calculated in CAM (***). CAM data for the end of November **** is not available.

On the other hand, for the ...

1.4 France's trade balance is clearly in surplus

In order to study the foreign trade of French bottled waters, it is necessary to analyze the products with the following HS codes:

******** - Waters, including mineral waters and aerated waters, containing added sugar or other sweetening matter or flavored, directly consumable as a beverage ******** - Natural mineral waters, not ...


2.1. Water consumer preferences

The water consumption of a French person is as follows:

Annual consumption of packaged water per capita France, ****-****, in L Source: ****

The graph above shows the annual consumption of bottled water by a French person.

The French consumption of bottled water is significantly more oriented towards still water: in fact, ...

2.2. The main purchasing channels

Consumption of bottled water:

Percentage of French people consuming bottled water France, ****-****, in % Source: ****

The graph above shows the share of the French population consuming bottled water. It is possible to conclude that in **** one French person out of two will buy a bottle of water.

Purchasing channels for bottled ...

2.3. The French are more and more sensitive to innovations and ecology

As a replacement for soda, the French are turning to flavored waters to quench their thirst. As a result, this market is experiencing strong growth and has seen sales increase by **% in volume and **.*% in value, in rolling annual growth as of May **, ****. Carbonated waters are the fastest growing in volume, ...

2.4 French people's favorite bottled water brands

The graph below was obtained from the survey conducted by OpinionWay about the favorite brands of the French in March ****. The respondents answered to the question "Do you like this or that brand of still water?" and for each brand, the percentage corresponds to the proportion of respondents who answered " ...


3.1. Value chain

The value chain of bottled water begins with the collection of water underground, or in surface water for water that is then treated. Spring and mineral waters are consumable as they are and undergo little treatment (***). Their disinfection is forbidden. Water made drinkable by treatment, on the contrary, must be disinfected ...

3.2. A highly concentrated market

When we look at the water market, we see that it is quite concentrated. Three groups hold more than three quarters of the market: Neptune and Nestlé Waters, with **.*% of the market each, and Danone, with **.*% of the market.

Market share of major water brands France, ****, in % Source: ****

The market is ...

3.3 A dynamic French production

Naf code **.**A, which includes the production of natural mineral waters and other bottled waters, provides us with information on French production. The turnover of the table water industry has been steadily increasing since **** and has seen an increase of **.*% in **** and **.*% since ****.

Table water industry turnover index France, ****-****, index ...

3.4 Distribution essentially provided by the mass retail sector, but undermined by the closure of restaurants during the lockdown

Bottled water is distributed through three main channels: supermarkets for consumption at home or on the go, restaurants and bars, and other businesses (***). Large and medium-sized retailers account for the majority of sales.

Nestlé's water division, on the other hand, saw a **% decline in sales in mid-year **** compared to mid-year ...

3.5 Cyclical production that must adapt to demand

As a direct result of the cyclical nature of demand, producers in the bottled water industry experience an increase in sales in the summer months, when temperatures are highest. They must therefore face the drop in sales in winter.

Sales peak in July and August, while November and December are the ...


4.1. Plain waters represent the majority of the market

Plain waters accounted for **% of sales in supermarkets in CAM on April **, ****, compared to **.*% for carbonated waters and *.*% for flavored waters. However, it is the latter that are experiencing the strongest growth (***). This one moreover seems to continue with an increase in sales of **.*% in CAM at the end of May ...

4.2. Prices on the rise since 2017

Consumer prices for mineral or spring water fell sharply between **** and **** but appear to be starting to rise since ****. The reasons for this recent price increase are multiple. First, producers have been passing on higher plastic prices to consumers, taking advantage of the oligopolistic market structure to do so. In addition, ...

4.3 An offer in competition with tap water

The main competitor of bottled water is tap water. If the consumption of bottled water is increasing, it thus remains lower than that of tap water. The barometer of the perception of water estimated in **** that **% of French people consumed tap water every day against only **% for bottled water. However, **% of ...

4.4 Bottled water is renewed

More environmentally friendly bottles

Since the ****s, plastic water bottles have been made entirely of PET (***), a fully recyclable material. The bottles, once sorted, crushed and melted to form granules, can be reused to make pens, clothes or other bottles.

However, the reality is quite different, since a large part of ...


5.1 Current regulations

Quality criteria

Water is subject to specific regulations (***) which distinguishes, under this term, three types of water according to their origin, their stability and the treatments to which they have been subjected:

natural mineral water ; spring water water made drinkable by treatment.

Three types of bottled water:

Water made drinkable by ...


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Reviews (1)

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The bottled water market - France

Publicado en 05/10/2022 by Inès Duffort

Excellente étude, bien sourcée et structurée. Cela m'a beaucoup aidée dans ma recherche.

Businesscoot Response:

Merci Inès pour votre retour! Nous sommes heureux d'avoir été à la hauteur de vos attentes.

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