With shoppers traditionally seeking to make healthier choices at this time of year after the excesses of the festive period, low and no sugar is the way to go with energy drinks.
New Year’s resolutions often mean that, after the excesses of Christmas and New Year, many shoppers are looking to make healthier choices at this time of the year. With a tough year behind them however, and the prospect of a tough start to 2021 ahead of them, many shoppers will be still be looking for a boost to get them through the day, which is great news for retailers in general and the huge energy drinks category in particular.
Today Sports & Energy is now worth £1.3bn, with growth totalling over £25.3m vs 2019 [Nielsen, Aug 2020]. This growth has been fuelled by the increasing demand for Functional Energy which have added over £130m vs 2019 and are fast approaching a billion-pound segment, today worth over £900m annually. The consistent performance of Functional in the category has ensured that Sports & Energy has remained in growth despite slower performance in other segments and Functional Energy is the fastest growing segment in Soft Drinks at +6.1%.
A big beneficiary of this trend has been category captain Red Bull which, over the past year, has seen volume per buyer increase by a whopping 37.4% [Kantar, Aug 2020].
Offering choice is at the centre of a strong energy offer and especially at the start of the year as consumers increasingly pick up a sugarfree alternative. Red Bull has reacted to the shift to sugar free with an expansion of its range to include a sugarfree variant of almost every pack in the range. This has seen Red Bull launch Sugarfree 473ml, Tropical Sugarfree Edition in 2018, along with Coconut Berry Sugarfree Edition in 2019.
Red Bull Zero was relaunched earlier in 2020 with a reformulated taste profile, responding to shopper demand for a great tasting energy drink without sugar. Red Bull Zero has sold 1m cans since launching earlier this year and is one of the biggest NPD contributors of growth to the Sports & Energy category, adding almost £1.3m of value as part of Red Bull’s £23m YTD growth vs 2019 [Nielsen]. Red Bull Zero is now available in a 250ml 4-pack to meet this profitable retail opportunity.