Canadian Vending

Features Healthy Vending Trends
Healthy sodas not too hard for Canadians to swallow


August 27, 2014
By Canadian Vending

Topics

Aug. 27, 2014, Toronto –
Many Canadians are constantly looking for ways to adopt a
healthier diet and monitor what ingredients they are eating and drinking,
suggests a study by Mintel.

Aug. 27, 2014, Toronto –
Many Canadians are constantly looking for ways to adopt a
healthier diet and monitor what ingredients they are eating and drinking,
suggests a study by Mintel.

The study indicates more than half of Canadians surveyed (52
per cent) say that they like to check the ingredients on the packaging of
carbonated soft drinks (CSDs).

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However, rather than give up their favourite fizzy beverage,
it seems that a high share of Canadians are more interested in healthier
adaptations of their favourite soft drinks. New Mintel research finds that four
in 10 (41 per cent) Canadian CSD users would be interested in CSDs that aid
digestive health.

Additionally, one third (36 per cent) of these users would
be interested in buying CSDs that contain botanical extracts and 46 per cent
agree that types with less sweet flavours would complement a meal better. This
underlines the potential for brands to continue driving the profile of the
“lighter” segment of the market, which stands at $3 billion overall, compared
to over $41 billion in the U.S.

“There may be opportunities for CSDs to leverage functional
benefits to boost usage in the category. Interestingly, this would hark back to
when these products were first introduced and were marketed with claims that
they could aid digestion,” said Warren de Lima, senior research analyst at
Mintel, in a news release. “Functionality has been a boon to markets such as
energy drinks, with brands delivering tangible benefits to users. While there
remain some difficulties for brands to use approved claims, this represents an
area worth further exploration.”

When it comes to choosing a particular carbonated soft
drink, health again plays a role. 29 per cent of users state that low/no
calorie content would make them choose one type of CSD over another and 14 per
cent would be attracted to a CSD with natural ingredients. This is of
particular relevance, since the attribute that Canadian CSD drinkers are most
likely to associate with them is that they are artificial (62 per cent).
Younger consumers are also surprisingly the most likely to agree that
carbonated drinks which are less fizzy appeal to them, with agreement peaking
among 18-24s at 35 per cent, well ahead of the overall average (24 per cent).

“Pepsi Next, introduced in early 2014, was launched to
respond to consumer concerns around CSDs being artificial and high in sugar. It
is positioned as a low-calorie cola that is ‘naturally sweetened’ by using
stevia extract, allowing the sugar content to undercut ‘the leading regular
cola’ by 30 per cent. Lower or no-calorie drinks are now a central part of the
CSD market and essential to the portfolios of many companies such as Pepsi and
Coca-Cola,” said Warren.

“The enduring criticism of the category for its claimed
health deficiencies has now been tackled by many brands. The subsequent
progress in this ‘lighter’ segment over the past decade has been significant,
and looks set to continue growing in the years ahead. However, taste is still
all-important and consumers will only embrace these ‘lighter’ drinks in the long
term if they taste as good as the regular/standard varieties. Vitaminwater’s
recent backtracking from a stevia-based recipe in the U.S bottled water market
underlines the difficulties brands face in balancing taste with health.”