Fruit beverage market declining

by Staff
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NEW YORK — Fruit beverages have experienced volume decline in recent years and are struggling to keep up with changes in the marketplace, according to the Beverage Marketing Corp.’s "Fruit Beverages in the U.S."

The past year marked the fourth straight year fruit beverage volume declined. Specifically, it fell to 3.9 billion gallons in 2007 from 4 billion gallons in 2006. There was a 3% decrease in 2007, a 2.4% decrease in 2006, a 1.6% decrease in 2005, and a 0.8% decrease in 2004.

While fruit juices represent the largest portion of fruit beverages, fruit drinks have gained in share of the fruit beverage market. Fruit drinks are defined as beverages containing less than 100% juice. Each year of the last nine years fruit drinks outperformed the total fruit beverage market. Fruit drinks still declined in the past three years but simply gained share by decreasing at a slower rate than 100% juice.

In recent years per capita fruit beverage consumption has declined along with industry volume. The average American drank about 12.9 gallons of fruit beverages in 2007, down from 13.4 gallons in 2006 and 13.9 gallons in 2005.

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