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Coca-Cola and PepsiCo continue to dominate the fruit juice market

Alex De Angelis

The fruit juice market grew by 1% in 2011, which is an improvement on the 1.7% decline witnessed in 2009 and no gain (0%) in 2010.

Fruit juices consist of 100% pure juice made from the flesh of fresh fruit or from concentrates and contain no flavourings, colours, preservatives or any other added ingredients. a few minor exceptions exist in order to ensure that the final product is of an acceptable taste.

Prior to the global financial crisis, producers of fruit juice and other beverages enjoyed significant growth. This performance was underpinned by soaring fruit prices being passed on to drinkers, growing health consciousness and consumer desire for convenience and premiumisation.

Looking at volumes of fruit juices, the market contracted in 2009, but at a lesser rate than market value. This indicates that heavy discounting was a feature of the market during this time, but seems to have reduced as a practice in 2010 as the economic situation has stabilised.

Like all industries in the drinks trade, the market is dominated by brands owned by multinational firms such as PepsiCo and Coca Cola. These companies invest heavily in product development, and this ensures that the market is constantly evolving. New flavours are continually being introduced to the market, as are new combinations and product concepts.

While Coca-Cola has seen several of its in-house brands perform well, most notably its powerhouse Minute Maid Pulpy brand in Asia, acquisition remains the primary path to growth in juices, with the largest global players cementing their positions through a flurry of buyouts in recent years.

PepsiCo, for instance, has staked out a dominant position in the fast-growing Russia market through its purchases of Lebedyansky and Wimm-Bill-Dann, while Suntory's additions of Frucor, Orangina-Schweppes and the Western Europe portion of the Sunny Delight brand have allowed it to carve out a powerful presence.

Meanwhile, the most consistently impressive performers have been products such as Vita Coco, the largest US coconut water brand, as well as Clover, a line of daily "juice cleanse" products which encourage the use of 100% juices as part of an overall health regimen.

For more information on the fruit juice sector, see the latest research: Fruit Juice Sector

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