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Non-alcoholic beverage to touch Rs 1.47 lakh crore by 2030
Friday, 26 August, 2022, 16 : 00 PM [IST]
Joshna Joseph
Beverages can be defined as 'any fluid which is consumed by drinking'. Beverages are an integral part of human diet. The cycle starts with the infant formulas- highly complex drink, rich in many key nutrients. As humans age and their nutritional requirements change, new products are designed which suit the consumers.

It consists of diverse group of food products, usually liquids that include the most essential drink ‘water’ to wide range of commercially available fluids like fruit beverage, synthetic drinks, alcoholic beverage, milk, dairy beverages, tea, coffee, chocolate drinks.

Despite differences in their properties one common feature that exists in all beverages is their ability to act as thirst quencher. Beverages are rarely consumed for their food value but are vital for life. Although their prime role is to fulfill the human need but these are part of our culture.

However there are important pre-requisite for beverages:-
• All are made from food ingredients
• All are subject to pure food law
• Consumed in enormous quantities – sometimes safer than potable supply

Beverages may be classified in various ways. The classification criteria may depend on various factors as mentioned below:
•Natural and Synthetic (Ingredients used in manufacture)
 •Carbonated and Non-carbonated (Degree of mechanical carbonation)
•Alcoholic and Non-alcoholic (presence or absence of alcohol)
•Hot and Cold (Temperature of serving)
•Stimulating and Non-stimulating (Based on physiological effect).

Non-alcoholic beverages comprise all beverages that are alcohol-free and include a wide range of sub-sectors, such as carbonated soft drinks (CSDs), fruits and vegetable juices, tea/coffee/milk based beverages, sports drinks, energy drinks and bottled water. The sector has witnessed continuous double-digit growth in the post-liberalisation period with the entry of a number of foreign and domestic corporates in manufacturing, and the proliferation of products and brands.

The sector has significant forward and backward linkages and connects the entire agriculture value chain—from farmers to consumers. This report examines the contribution of the sector to India’s economy in terms of its contribution to the GDP (gross domestic product), manufacturing sector, employment, FDI (foreign direct investment) inflows, technology transfer, exports and development of the agriculture value chain.

It analyses the barriers faced by the sector and suggests policy measures to enhance the global competitiveness of Indian industry, generate employment, facilitate exports and inflows of FDI, develop India as an agro-processing hub and link it to the global production network.

The packaged fruit juice market in India can be divided into three sub-categories-Juice Drinks (upto 24% Juice), 100% Juice and Nectars (25-99% Juice). Juice drinks is the highest-selling category, with about 75-80 cent share of the market. Mango remains the most popular flavour in the juice drinks category, with more than 80% market share by volume, followed by Lemon (6%) and Orange (5%).

In terms of brands, mango based juice drinks Maaza, Slice, and Frooti dominate the off-trade juice market by volume. In the 100% juice and nectars categories, however, the spread is more evenly distributed, with orange having the single largest market share of about 38-40%, followed by mixed fruits (21%) and apple (16%) in terms of volume. Some of the dominant brands in this segment include Real, Tropicana and Minute Maid. Raw Pressery is the leading company producing cold pressed juices in India.

India has the potential to become a non-alcoholic beverage hub and the country's non-alcoholic beverage market is expected to touch a market size of Rs 1.47 lakh crore by 2030
The size of the market was estimated at Rs 671 billion (Rs 67,100 crore) in 2019, which is projected to reach around Rs 1,472.33 billion (Rs 1,47,233 crore) in 2030, in the realistic scenario.

Bottled water and carbonated soft drinks still account for the bulk of the non-alcoholic beverages sector, the market for juices, energy drinks, tea, milk and coffee-based beverages and organic drinks is expanding.

The non-alcoholic beverages industry is comprised of companies involved in the production and sales of drinking products not containing alcohol. The breadth of this segment spans from bottled water, to coffee and tea, to soft drinks, juices and other products.

Some of the biggest trends in the industry follow the general trend in consumer goods products of an increased focus on health and wellness. In the non-alcoholic beverages sector this has expressed itself through functional beverages and fermented beverages. Both types of products aim to provide some benefits to the consumer beyond simple thirst quenching or flavour. In the case of functional water, additional nutrients or naturally occurring chemicals are added to the water, while fermented products like kombucha market the naturally occurring health benefits of the product, often digestive health.

Carbonated drinks are known by various names world over like soda, sparkling, and also as ‘thanda’ in India. All the carbonated drinks come with a fizz that is produced by the carbon dioxide gas that is pressurised into the water. Other than the effervescent water, carbonated drinks or soda primarily contain ingredients like sweetener (artificial or natural), a synthetic taste enhancer like caffeine and a flavouring agent, in a combination of one or more.

The sweetener may be a sugar, high fructose corn syrup, or a sugar substitute in the case of diet drinks. A soft drink, mainly in cola category may also contain caffeine. Widely sold soft drink flavours are cola, lemon-lime, root beer, orange, grape vanilla, ginger ale, fruit punch and sparkling lemonade.

The non-alcoholic beverages segment faces complex consumer demands for nutritious and energy rich fresh products with supplemental ingredients. The functional ingredients present in these beverages could be physiologically active also, within the frame work of regulatory bodies. Juices, tea, coffee, milk, syrups, punches, water, offer us refreshment, quenching of thirst and richness of taste with varieties of flavours. The latter part has contributed to the reasons why these beverages are universally enjoyed by people of all ages, irrespective of age, gender or class. These beverages offer different levels of physiologically active ingredients and hence, due care must be given on their regular intake in high quantities.  

Similarly the safety aspects of these juices including the herbals should be seriously dealt with. The latest trends revealed that many companies were trying to enlarge or diversify their product portfolio in the direction of healthier options. This is mainly due to the high sugar contents in the sweet beverages. Hence, the choice was towards the bottled drinking water. The bottled water market is growing at a rapid rate of around 20% a year in lndia, whereas, the branded fruit juices segment is growing at around 11% annually.

(The author is senior executive QA and Regulatory
at Roha Dyechem Pvt. Ltd)
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