Britvic has released its annual overview of the soft drinks category. The sector is showing juicy growth but there are challenges ahead. Here are the highlights...


1. They are worth a load of cash

Soft drinks are worth a mighty £4.3bn to the licensed trade. The category has grown around three per cent in the last year which shows how important it is for pubs to get the right range. The increase is even greater in food led pubs – up 13.6 per cent to around £971m.



2. The Sugar Tax will not be sweet

Not for producers anyway, who are reformulating many products ahead of the introduction of the levy next year. Focus will be placed on low or no sugar products.


3. Healthy living helps

Although the government will want to look like they are driving the agenda the truth is it is simply what customers demand. Healthier lifestyles are seeing people look for low calories ways of quenching their thirst. Paul Graham, managing director at Britvic GB, says: "We've taken bold steps to help consumers to make choices that are better for them, removing 19 billion calories per year from our portfolio since 2012."


4. Low in sugar, high in popularity

Cola highlights the switch more than any other category. Britvic's Pepsi Max has grown by 54.2 per cent over the last year. While rival brand Coca-Cola Zero has also seen its stock rise, up 22.8 per cent. It's why Britvic is launching products such as Pepsi Max Ginger.




5. Others on the up

Other soft drink sectors that have seen significant growth include water (up 7.6 per cent), pure juices (9.9 per cent) and mixers (15.3 per cent).





6. On the slide

Those that have fared less well include energy drinks (down 0.6 per cent), squash (6.3 per cent) and juice drinks and juice mixers (around 4 per cent).


7. Punters like premium

The love affair with posh soft drinks shows no signs of abating with value in the licensed sector up by a whopping 30 per cent. Creating the right serve with the right glassware and garnish can push your profits up.


8. Soft drinks with food

Soft drinks are the biggest sellers with food, maybe you should consider a menu to match the demand. According to the report 72 per cent of people would order a soft drink if it was highlighted on the menu


9. Get the knowledge

Your staff are your biggest asset and 64 per cent of customers would go for a recommendation by one of the team.