Summary of our market study

As of 2020, the global bottled water market has continued to see growth, with a steady increase in the consumption of various types of bottled water, including spring water, sparkling water, and water treated to become mineral-rich. Following the trend from 2011 to 2018, which saw a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 2.3% for plastic bottles, the market has maintained a strong preference towards plastic packaging over glass due to its cost-effectiveness and convenience. In the UK, the market has particularly thrived, showing an impressive upturn with a projection of reaching 4100 million liters sold by 2022, translating to an estimated market value of 2.£65 billion. Major players like Highland Spring, Evian, Buxton, Nestlé Pure Life, and Volvic dominate, accounting for 30% of sales. Trends such as kid-friendly bottles, dual-usage containers, and sustainable packaging have emerged in response to consumer preferences leaning towards convenience and environmental consideration. However, this growth is not without its challenges, as environmental concerns and increasing popularity of alternatives such as filtering pitchers and reusable bottles may pose threats to the market's expansion..Bottled Water Market Trends and Analysis in the UK The UK's bottled water market has shown significant growth, presenting a promising trajectory for the future. The analysis suggests a high level of consumer demand for various forms of bottled water, including spring water, sparkling water, and water altered to become mineral-rich through treatment processes. Within this market, the clear preference has been towards portable solutions, with consumption trends indicating an increase of around 3 litres per person annually in the years leading up to 2016. Additionally, the use of plastic bottles has risen, contributing to a compounded annual growth rate of approximately 2.3% between 2011 and 2018, leading to a market size of around 17 million tons by 2018. The market structure of bottled water in the UK is both fragmented and concentrated with a handful of leading brands, such as Highland Spring, Evian, Buxton, Nestlé Pure Life, and Volvic, collectively controlling approximately 30% of the sales. These brands have been able to solidify their market positions through innovative offerings that appeal to specific consumer segments, such as kid-friendly bottles adorned with cartoon characters, dual usage bottles, and more environmentally sustainable packaging options, reflecting the growing consumer consciousness towards ecological impacts. In terms of market valuation, the UK bottled water sector was worth between £1.5 billion and £2 billion in 2016, with projections forecasting expansion to upwards of £2.5 billion by 2022. Sales volumes followed suit, with an estimated leap from around 2600 million liters to just over 4000 million liters expected within a five-year timeframe. Consumer behaviors towards bottled water consumption are influenced by socio-economic factors. A notable example includes the aging population seeking specific nutritional benefits from bottled water, such as enriched mineral content. Health concerns lead to an increasing displacement of sugared soft drinks with bottled water, reinforcing the beverage's status as a health-oriented choice. This shift is further underscored by robust sales in out-of-home dining venues, which account for a significant portion of bottled water sales. Despite the impressive consumption statistics, the bottled water market faces potential threats from environmental concerns and a growing propensity of consumers to opt for tap water solutions. This shift is evidenced by rising sales of carafe filters and a marked preference for higher quality, costlier filtering products. Additionally, measures to encourage recycling and the use of reusable bottles could pose challenges to the market's growth. On the distribution and production front, the packaging and bottling techniques have evolved to cater to consumer.### Dominant Forces in the Bottled Water Arena As we delve into the fiercely competitive bottled water market, several key players have emerged as champions, dominating the shelves and quenching the thirst of consumers. These corporations have not only managed to secure substantial market shares but also earned consumer trust with their array of water offerings tailored to various needs and occasions. #### Danone Waters: A Hydration Titan Danone Waters, a subsidiary of the global food giant Danone Group, commands a formidable presence in the United Kingdom's bottled water market. With a diverse portfolio of brands such as Evian, Volvic, and Badoit, Danone Waters merges prestige with practicality. Evian, known for its pure and mineral-rich contents sourced from the French Alps, enjoys a strong following, with its distinct taste and premium positioning. #### Nestlé Waters UK: Fusing Nature and Nourishment Nestlé Waters UK, another colossal contender, offers consumers the distinctly British taste of Buxton water. Sourced from the Peak District's natural springs, Buxton stands out for its crispness and natural mineral content. The Nestlé Pure Life brand further cements the company's footprint in the market, offering a promise of purity and hydration to consumers of all demographics. #### Highland Spring: Scotland's Liquid Pride Highland Spring prides itself on being a leading advocate for natural hydration. With its origin in the Scottish Ochil Hills, the brand boasts an organic and sustainable narrative that resonates well with environmentally conscious buyers. Highland Spring's offerings underscore the essence of unaltered nature, delivering a fresh taste that's as close to the source as possible. #### Supermarket Giants: Affordable Hydration Supermarket brands like Tesco have also carved out a considerable market share with their own-label bottled water. Cost-effective and easily accessible, these store-branded aqua solutions cater to everyday needs without denting the wallet. Tesco’s range competes on price while ensuring that convenience and quality hydration are just an aisle away. #### Sparkling Innovators: Evolving with Consumer Desires As the market shifts towards healthier beverages, brands have adapted by introducing sparkling waters and flavored options. Volvic and Evian, for example, have expanded their lines to include sparkling variants, appealing to customers looking for the fizzy sensation without the unwanted sugars and artificial flavors. Each of these main players contributes uniquely to the market's dynamics, offering consumers a variety of bottled waters that promise refreshment, convenience, and lifestyle alignment. Whether through innovation,
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Summary and extracts

1 Market summary

1.1 Definition and presentation

Bottled water is drinking water – either natural or purified – packaged inside plastic or glass bottles. The bottled water market refers to production and consumption of:

  • spring water 
  • sparkling water 
  • water made mineral by treatment

The Global Market amounted to 17 million tons in 2018; from 2011 to 2018, the market for plastic bottles grew by CAGR 2.3%. This growth is attributable to the packaging- and cost-efficiency of plastic compared to other raw materials such as glass. In the U.K. 7.7 billion plastic bottles are used every year; that’s equivalent to more than three a week. [Water]

Five brands are collectively responsible for 30% of sales; these include Highland Spring, Evian, Buxton, Nestlé Pure Life and Volvic. The market is fragmented but concentration of the top players remains high. [packagingnews]

Trends in this market include kid friendly bottles, dual usage, and sustainability. The first phenomenon refers to bottles which include cartoon characters on the labelling; this attracts the attention of kids. Secondly, dual usage bottles, for example a bottle which can be converted into a wine glass, appeal to customers due to the convenience. Finally, plastic bottles using for example elements of paper appeal more to consumers in times when concerns over plastic’s environmental impact are rising. [Chron]

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Latest news

Nestlé admits using prohibited methods for its mineral waters - 29/01/2024
  • Nestlé Waters is the world's number one mineral water company.
  • In 2021, the company informed the French authorities of its use of banned treatments such as ultraviolet and activated carbon filters on some of its mineral waters.
  • The brands concerned are Perrier, Vittel, Hépar and Contrex, all owned by Nestlé.
Nestlé Waters cuts 200 jobs at Vittel, Hépar and Contrex - 17/05/2023
  • Nestlé Waters is cutting 171 jobs by the end of the year at its bottling plants in Vittel and Contrexéville (Vosges).
  • In 2019, around 100 positions had already been cut.
  • At present, the workforce stands at 721.
  • After the redundancy plan, the workforce is expected to fall to 550.
  • In 2005, there were 2,100 employees at these plants.
  • Nestlé Waters has decided to stop marketing Vittel in Germany in 2022.
  • The suspension of two of the six boreholes dedicated to Hépar water was announced in May.
  • The two suspended boreholes account for 60% of Hépar water production.
Perrier sparkling water faces production cutback - 18/04/2023
  • Reduced flow of water from Perrier natural spring due to climatic events
  • Annual production at Vergèze: approx. 1.6 billion bottles
  • Number of employees (including temporary staff): approx. 1,000
  • Downsizing planned: 250 positions by 2024
  • Current investment plan: 40 million euros
  • Investments made since 2016: 170 million euros
Tetrapack invests in its Dijon plant - 02/12/2022
  • Sales of 11 billion
  • 25.000 employees
  • Dijon is the Swedish group's only French brick production site
Private label manufacturers are expecting consolidation. - 21/10/2022
  • 80% of French private label sales are produced by VSEs, SMEs and ETIs
  • Refresco produces and bottles juices, iced teas and still fruit drinks for all French retailers
  • In the third quarter of 2021 , sales volumes rose by between 18% and 26%, depending on the category
Tetra Pak, a company that applies the latest technologies to improve food systems. - 09/06/2022
  • Tetra Pak partners with start-ups to boost innovation in food and beverages
  • Tetra Pak has invested in innovation platforms such as Paris&Co and Smart Food Paris
  • The company has carried out over 300 preliminary analyses, culminating in ten pilot research projects.
  • Tetra Pak wants to recycle PET trays

Companies quoted in this study

This study contains a complete overview of the companies in the market, with the latest figures and news for each company. :

Highland Spring Group
AG Barr
Harrogate Spring
Tetra Pack
Sidel (Tetra Laval Groupe)
AVE UK (Groupe Della Toffola)
Nestlé Waters

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