Tea and ready-to-drink (rtd) tea in the u

Tea and Ready-to-Drink (RTD) Tea in the U.S.: Retail, Foodservice and Consumer Trends-Aarkstore Enterprise

Although the economic recession has clearly affected the U.S. tea market, slowing previously double-digit sales growth in the pricier RTD segment while slightly lifting sales in the more affordable bags/loose tea segment, tea’s appeal as an “affordable luxury” and its compelling image as a healthy product have kept sales in the black when many other CPG categories have seen declines. Moreover, considering the 2005-2009 period overall, sales have done well, and as the economic picture brightens the recession may turn out to have a silver lining in that it has compelled tea marketers to innovate along value-added lines likely to continue to resonate well with consumers in the years ahead.

Market thrusts examined in the report include exotic superfruit flavors; hybrid products designed to compete with other beverage categories including bottled waters, energy drinks and sodas; new RTD spins on green tea that promise to mainstream this tea type once and for all; emerging segments including yerba mate and Kombucha; the upswing in fair trade and other “ethical” appeals; social marketing via nontraditional media like Facebook and Twitter; and a strong tea push in the convenience store channel by marketers and operators alike. At the same time, foodservice players from fine restaurants on down are expanding their tea offerings even as tea rooms and coffee/tea shops surge, suggesting tea may be headed toward much broader levels of distribution and popularity ? la Starbucks.

This fully updated report examines the U.S. market for tea across the retail and foodservice spectrum, including ready-to-drink (RTD) tea, leaf (bagged and loose) tea, and instant tea. Following an introductory chapter documenting tea types, packaging trends, “the ethics of tea,” and global market trends, the report segments and quantifies the market by channel and product type, providing historical sales figures and projections through 2014. The report examines market drivers and trends and thoroughly maps out the competitive situation to the marketer and brand share level, profiling brands including Arizona RTD Tea (Ferolito, Vultaggio & Sons), Bigelow Tea (R.C. Bigelow, Inc.), Celestial Seasonings (The Hain Celestial Group, Inc.), Honest Tea (Honest Tea, Inc.), Lipton (Unilever) and Starbucks and Tazo Tea (Starbucks Coffee Co.). Trends in new product introductions are analyzed at length, based on data from Datamonitor’s Product Launch Analytics, as are trends in the c-store and foodservice channels.

An exclusive feature of this report is custom survey data from Packaged Facts’ February 2009 online poll of 2,600 U.S. adults, which was conducted to measure purchasing patterns, attitudes and demographics specific to tea and other functional foods and beverages. Drilling down to the brand level, the analysis also relies on consumer survey data from Experian Simmons’ Spring 2009 National Consumer Study to chart consumer demographic and psychographic trends, Information Resources, Inc. InfoScan Review data tracking product sales in mass-market channels, and wholesale data from leading natural/specialty channel distributor United Natural Foods, Inc. (UNFI) to quantify sales and market shares of natural and specialty products.

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