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6 Insights into the Children’s Beverage Market

Girl drinking a juice box

According to research, children are underserved by beverage markets. How can manufacturers close this “innovation gap” in the children’s beverage market? Here are six insights into the market including ideas on how to reach this growing consumer base.

1. The global beverage market is booming and kids are becoming a focus.

The global beverage market value is expected to surpass $1 trillion by 2022, according to Euromonitor. And many products in the category are heavily consumed by children. For example, Mintel research shows that in the US, 94 percent of six- to eleven-year-olds drink juice. In the UK, eight in ten kids consume fruit juices and smoothies.

2. But few beverage products are explicitly created for children.

We are seeing relatively little new product development in the children’s beverage market that target kids and their unique nutritional needs. Between December 2012 and November 2017, just 5 percent of new water launches, 6 percent of juice drinks, and 6 percent of other beverages were aimed at kids. By contrast, 17 percent of new breakfast cereal launches over the same period were child-focused.[1]

3. Functional ingredients that offer nutritional benefits may be the key to kickstarting innovation in the children’s beverage market.

Take for example the fact that eight in ten parents say their choice of product is influenced by how it will affect their child’s health and well-being.[2] And most prefer their kids to get health-enhancing ingredients from food and drink rather than pills.[3]

4. The addition of functional ingredients may help restore the parent-appeal of beverages that have suffered a loss of reputation.

Juices were once seen as a healthy choice for children, but are now often demonized for their high sugar content. The use of functional ingredients creates opportunities to offset such concerns, as well as offering nutritional benefits that allow product differentiation.

5. One area where there is high potential for innovation and growth in the children’s beverage market is focusing on immune health.

Keeping kids well is a priority for parents, and young immune systems are vulnerable. But despite high levels of interest, only 2 percent of children’s food and drink products launched globally between 2012 and 2017 carried an immune system claim, indicating a major opportunity for manufacturers.[4]

6. Look for science backed functional ingredients.

The real opportunity to differentiate kids’ beverage products lies in the use of healthy, clinically proven functional ingredients. They can further support the health halo of functional beverages for children, increasing appeal to parents and allowing products to stand out from the crowd.

Digest more with our related resources:



[1] Mintel, Children’s Nutrition Insight, December 2017
[2] GlobalData, Global Consumer Survey, Q3 2018
[3] GlobalData, Top Trends in Baby and Child Care, April 2018
[4] Mintel, Children’s Nutrition Insight, December 2017

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