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30 Water Bottle Industry Statistics, Trends & Analysis

When you take a look at the water bottle industry in the United States, the contrast this product has when compared to the trends governing soft drinks is quite striking. Water products are rising rapidly while its primary competition continues to lose its market share. According to data offered by the Beverage Marketing Corporation, the 42.1 gallons that consumers drink of water almost matches the 2012 levels of carbonated soft drink consumption.

People are changing their attitudes about water bottles today. Although there are still concerns about plastics in the bottles being recycled, the growing trend of purchasing reusable containers is helping the market continue to grow. With an increase in home and office deliveries to consider as well, consumers are finding more ways to make water portable, which may lead to societal health benefits in the coming years.

The sparkling bottled water segment grew by double-digit percentages for the fourth consecutive year in 2017, with over 5 billion gallons of new product consumed. With revenues soon topping $20 billion, the water bottle industry is poised to reach new records in the coming years.

Important Water Bottle Industry Statistics

#1. Bottled water is the top beverage product in the United States by volume. Over 13.7 billion gallons were sold in 2017, which represents a 7% increase from the year before. (Beverage Daily)

#2. The total revenues generated by the water bottle industry were $18.5 billion, representing an increase of 8.8%. This occurs at the same time that carbonated soft drinks saw their 13th-consecutive decline in sales. (Beverage Daily)

#3. The average person in the United States consumes 42 gallons of bottled water each year, compared to the 37.5 gallons of carbonated soft drinks that are also consumed. (Beverage Daily)

#4. All segments of bottled water grew in 2017. Non-sparkling water saw an increase of 5.5%, while domestic sparkling water grew by 27.5%. Even imported water sales grew by 9.2%. (Beverage Daily)

#5. Office and home delivery of bottled water in 3-gallon and 5-gallon sizes saw an increase of 1.3% for 2017 from the year before. (Beverage Daily)

#6. 63% of consumers say that bottled water, either sparkling or still, is one of their preferred beverages when they are thirsty. That ranks higher than coffee at 62% or a carbonated soft drink, diet or regular, at 58%. (Harris Poll)

#7. Several companies which are produced bottled water for sale are using up to 100% rPET for their containers, while curbside recycling rates in the United States for the product reached 53.9% in 2017. Even plastic bottles and caps are 100% recyclable today. (Beverage Daily)

#8. Bottled water uses only .011% of all water that is used in the United States each year. (IBWA)

#9. It only takes 0.24 megajoules of energy to produce 1 liter of bottled water for consumers in the United States. (IBWA)

#10. Bottled water takes a 23.9% volume share of the beverage segment in the United States, which makes it the top product purchased by consumers. Carbonated soft drinks have a 22.3% share of the market. Then it is coffee (12.5%), beer and cider (11.5%0, and milk (10%). (Beverage Marketing Corporation)

#11. 69.5% of the bottled water that Americans consume each year comes in a PET single-serve pottle. Only 10.6% of the volume share comes from HOD, while 8.7% comes through retail bulk sales. Vending machines contribute 7.3% of the bottled water sales achieved by the industry each year. (Beverage Marketing Corporation)

#12. China is the global leader for the consumption of bottled water, with over 25.4 billion gallons consumed in 2017. The growth of their market from figures in 2012 was 11.8%. The United States is the only other market to exceed 10 billion gallons of water consumed, and its CAGR during that time was 7.1%. (Beverage Marketing Corporation)

#13. India achieved 10.4% market growth for bottled water consumption between 2012-2017, reaching 5.75 billion gallons of water consumed for the year. (Beverage Marketing Corporation)

#14. The Top 10 consumers for the water bottle industry used a total of 80 billion gallons of water, while the world total came just under 100 billion gallons for the first time. Total water consumption globally has increased by 6.4% since 2012. (Beverage Marketing Corporation)

#15. Mexico is the largest per capita consumer of bottled water in the world today, with the average person drinking 67.2 gallons. Thailand comes in second, with 57.5 per capital. These two leaders are followed by Italy (48.2), the United States (42.1), Germany (37.9), and France (36.4). (Beverage Marketing Corporation)

#16. The global average for bottled water consumption per capita is just 13.2, although that rate is about 3 gallons higher than it was in 2012. (Beverage Marketing Corporation)

#17. Only three countries in the Top 20 of bottled water consumption saw a per capita decrease in their consumption levels: Switzerland, Argentina, and Austria. (Beverage Marketing Corporation)

#18. It requires three times the amount of water to produce a plastic bottle than it does to fill it, contributing to a cost factor that is 1,000 times higher when compared to tap water. (Ban the Bottle)

#19. Although the average American uses 167 water bottles over the course of a year, they will only recycle 38 of them. (Ban the Bottle)

#20. It requires 17 million barrels of oil to produce the number of plastic bottles which are used each year, which could create enough fuel to operate 1 million vehicles for an entire year. (Ban the Bottle)

#21. Bottled water at the average rates that Americans consume it can cost about $350 per year, but if you drank the same amount in tap water, the total cost would only be $0.48. That means the average household could save $3,400 per person by switching from bottled to tap water. (Consumer Reports)

#22. The bottled water industry generates over $100 billion in revenues each year in the United States alone. (National Geographic)

#23. Up to 80% of the plastic bottles which do not make it into a recycling program in the United States will end up in a landfill. They do not break down naturally, which runs the risk of releasing toxic chemicals when they do start decomposing. (National Geographic)

#24. Brazil leads the world in total annual renewable water resources, with over 1,975 cubic miles of product access. Russia comes in second with 1,079 cubic miles, followed by Canada (792), the United States (736), and Indonesia (681).

#25. Kuwait has the fewest annual renewable water resources in the world, with access to just 0.005 cubic miles of this resource. They are followed by Barbados (0.02), Antigua and Barbuda (0.02), Bahrain (0.02), and the Central African Republic (0.07). (Seametrics)

#26. 88% of the fatal cases of malaria, cholera, typhoid, and diarrhea are due to limited water access that could be solved by stronger distribution networks of bottled water. (Seametrics)

#27. For every $1 that is spent by the water bottle industry on sanitation projects and water access, there is a $9 return produced. (Seametrics)

#28. Although tap water is cheaper than bottled water, 95% of the water that enters the average home in the United States will go down the drain. Showers account for 27% of the total water use in the United States each year. (Seametrics)

#29. The United Nations estimates that the cost of providing global access to safe water is just $30 billion. If the United States took that money out of their defense budget, there would still be $580 billion to spend, which would still be higher than the next 9 countries expenses combined for the same resource. (Seametrics)

#30. Over 443 million school days are lost each year because of water-related disease issues that the water bottle industry could help to solve. (Seametrics)

Water Bottle Industry Trends and Analysis

Water consumption is expected to continue increasing in the United States over the next 10-year period, with the average per capita rate topping 50 gallons by 2028 – if not before. 94% of Americans say that drinking bottled water is a healthier choice when compared to a soft drink. 93% say that they would like to see this product become available in all retail situations.

There are multiple qualities which contribute to the water bottle industry’s continued attraction to American consumers, with benefits seen in safety, convenience, value, and health. This trend will only continue to grow as customers step away from the idea that buying water that they could get from a tap is a waste of funds. Addressing this issue through filters and reusable bottles has helped to secure strong growth for the industry.

With consumption levels expected to continue increasing in the U.S. and around the world, the only issue to consider in this forecast for the industry is how much growth it will achieve. Although the double-digit percentages for some segments will wind down, we expect to see a CAGR of 4% at minimum for the industry as a whole, with the sparkling segment averaging 7% through 2029.

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