INNOVATIONS in Bottled Water

“Between 2004 and 2007 there has been an overall growth in bottled

water NPD (Consumer Market Research) of 12%.

The figure above shows the percentage growth in

each category. The strongest rate of growth is in the fruit and fruit

flavored bottled water category, albeit from a very low base.

This category has grown by 504% over the period. The increase has

predominantly been driven by consumers switching from sugary

carbonated drinks to healthier flavored bottled water alternatives.

Plain waters have also experienced growth in new product

introductions at 17%. The plain waters category is by far the largest category…“

Consumer concerns over rising obesity levels combined with an increase

in public knowledge of health issues, has had a positive effect on the

bottled water market. Consumers have been switching from sugary

carbonated drinks to healthier alternatives. In addition, manufacturers are

creating new premium and super-premium brands to satisfy demand at

the high end of the market. These trends, combined with convenience

and ethical issues, mean there is currently a significant amount of

innovation in the bottled water market.

Key Trends in the Bottled Water Market. Prestige.

The emerging trend of ‘prestige’ bottled waters is reliant not only on the sourcing of the ‘purest’ water, but also very much on packaging, designed to appeal to a super-premium audience. A good example of such a product is Evian Palace. This new luxury bottle is currently only available in fine dining restaurants and hotels. Launched in early 2007 it is available across several regions including North America and Europe. The Palace Bottle is claimed to have been designed to represent the modern vision of Evian whilst maintaining a strong tie to Evian’s heritage with the Alps.

It incorporates a unique pouring instrument called the ‘Palace Pourer’ claimed to be the first of its kind in the bottled water industry. The pourer has been designed to deliver both on form and function, to provide a true luxury water experience. The restricted distribution of this product helps to secure its status as a ‘prestige’ item – though for Evian and other bottled water manufacturers there is an opportunity to market a restricted number of such products to retail – as luxury items. Another example of a prestige bottled water comes in the form of Voss. Launched on the Greek Market in November 2006, Voss is a lightly sparkling ‘artesian’ water. The water is produced by Voss Production ASA in Norway and distributed by New Age Media. The bottle, a sleek cylinder, is claimed to have been designed by one of Calvin Klein’s designers. Artesian water is water collected from confined, underground aquifers. Because the water is protected by an impermeable layer it does not come into contact with pollutants and therefore is pristine in nature. Artesian waters are often marketed as super-premium products.

One of the most famous of artesian waters is Fiji water. Claimed to be a favorite of celebrities, the water is promoted as the ‘taste of paradise’. Marketing literature claims; ‘450 year-old rain water passes through nature’s most perfect filtration system, giving Fiji Natural Artesian Water an unparalleled purity that provides consumers with the best possible tasting water’. Launched on the Canadian market in February 2007,Fiji water has been a favorite of US celebrities since 1998.By ensuring product placement in films and TV, supplying the water free of charge to a number of celebrities as well as gaining listings in top quality hotels and restaurants, Fiji Water secured its fortunes as a sought after super-premium brand. The product is now widely distributed and can be enjoyed as an ‘affordable luxury’ by all. Fiji Water exemplifies how bottled water can attain premium status. Evian Palace, Voss and Fiji water are examples of the growing importance of packaging design in marketing products as super-premium. With the health and premium trends set to grow in importance over the next five years, packaging design will becoming increasingly important as a product differentiator.


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