Functional drinks are non-alcoholic, ready to drink beverages that include non-traditional ingredients. Some of the most common ingredients found in functional drinks include herbs, minerals, vitamins, amino acids and some additional raw fruits or vegetables. Functional drinks offer definite health related benefits that go beyond general daily nutritional intake. It offers variety of health benefits with effect of added ingredients, such as immune system strengthening, improved mental energy, cholesterol management, improved bone health, improved heart health, and other benefit associated with vision and eye-health. Some of the most commonly found functional drinks include yoghurt & dairy drinks, sports & performance drinks, functional milk, enhanced water, energy drinks, enhanced fruit drinks & juices, soy beverages and ready to drink teas.
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On the basis of health benefits associate with functional drinks, the global function drinks market can be segment in four broad categories namely, Hydration drinks, Energy or Rejuvenation drinks, Weight Management drinks and Health & Wellness drinks.
On the basis of the product segment the overall market of functional drinks can be segmented in five different classes namely probiotic drinks, energy drinks, juice and juice drinks, enhanced water drinks and others.
Both convenience and health benefits associated with functional drinks are the leading factors influencing the market. Further, recent product innovations have led to introduction of many new products and flavors in functional drinks market which in turn is boosting the overall market for functional drinks. The trend towards healthy life style and disease prevention, coupled with rising health care cost are some of the major drivers of global functional drinks market.
Increasing international sporting events and commercialization of domestic sporting events in developing countries of Asia Pacific is providing new growth opportunities for functional drinks in fast growing markets such as India and China.
Skepticisms on product efficiency and lack of clarity among consumer are acting as restrains for the overall growth of functional drinks market. Further time consuming result of the ingredients used in functional drinks is one of the major challenge for the functional drinks market.
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North America is the largest market for functional drinks and still having a healthy growth rate. It is followed by Europe where demand from Germany and The U.K. is boosting the market and expected to boost the growth rate further in coming years. Asia Pacific is the fastest growing market of functional drinks. Demand from Chinese and Japanese market is fueling the growth of the market in this region. India is expected to be one of the fasted growing market in Asia Pacific region with growth rate in double digit in the coming years.
The major companies operating in global functional drinks market include Maxinutrition, Glanbia, PepsiCo Inc., GNC Holdings, Clif Bar & Company, The Coca-Cola Company, Universal Nutrition, Nestle S.A, Red Bull GmbH, Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc., and Groupe Danone