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Health and wellness drives growth of vegetable juices, juice smoothies

As consumers demand more better-for-you products, experts note that the juice and juice drinks category has been challenged in a unique way and struggled to maintain its share of the beverage market. “The juice/juice drinks sector has struggled during the past year,” says Susan Viamari, vice president of Thought Leadership at Chicago-based Information Resources Inc. (IRI). “Volume declined 1.8 percent, while dollar sales inched up just 0.8 percent. Juice drink concentrates saw the largest slide (volume down 49.8 percent; dollars down 24.1 percent), while performance was strongest in bottled juices (volume down 0.5 percent; dollars up 2.2 percent).”

These numbers reflect growing consumer trends of better-for-you, fresh products, among many other factors. Chicago-based Euromonitor International also points to the decline in its March 2016 report titled “Juice in the US,” and explains that it’s largely a result of consumer aversion to sugar and artificial ingredients. “The high sugar content of many juices has turned health-conscious consumers away from these beverages. This trend is having a particularly damaging effect on juices which are not 100 percent juice, as these are more likely to have added sugar in their ingredient lists, pushing away consumers who may have once perceived these products as favorable compared with carbonates.”

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