The pace of innovation is picking up in the ready-to-drink iced coffee market.


DUIVEN, THE NETHERLANDS — The ready-to-drink iced coffee market is a small slice of the global beverage category, but Innova Market Insights noted in a recent report that the pace of innovation is picking up. New product activity accounted for 4.2% of global beverage launches during the past 12 months, up from 3% five years ago.

Asia continues to dominate in terms of new product introductions, accounting for 53%, ahead of Europe at 30% and North America with 11.5%.

“Although ambient canned and bottled coffee drinks continue to dominate globally, particularly in well-established markets such as those in parts of Asia and the U.S., it is the chilled milk-based variants in lidded cups for on-the-go consumption that have been leading growth, particularly in the relatively undeveloped European market,” said Lu Ann Williams, director of innovation for Innova Market Insights.

The dairy industry in Europe has been driving new product activity, with such companies as Emmi of Switzerland developing its Caffe Latte line of products. Other innovators include Arla Foods, which markets the Starbucks Discoveries line of R.-T.-D. iced coffees, and dairy processor FrieslandCampina, which markets the J Bauer and Landliebe brands.

The level of innovation has garnered the interest of such traditional hot coffee manufacturers as Mondelēz International, which introduced an iced coffee product under its Jacobs brand, and Nestle S.A. which followed suit this summer with the launch of Shakissimo under its Nescafe brand.