Response to Sydney Morning Herald ‘Nutritionist, soft drink makers argue over study’

17 February 2014

Beverage research provides much needed data around consumer behaviour

“Australian beverage habits have been changing but there has been no conclusive research into the total consumption trends of non-alcoholic water based beverages in more than seven years,” said Australian Beverages Council CEO Geoff Parker.

Quenching Australia’s thirst: a trend analysis of water-based beverage sales from 1997 to 2011, published this month in the Journal of Nutrition & Dietetics, is the first new research of its kind to understand consumer habits.

“This peer reviewed research provides much needed objective industry data around current beverage consumption trends,” Mr Parker said.

“This is robust and thorough piece of research that has academic and methodology rigour. There is no conclusive research from this decade to show what Australians are drinking when it comes to water-based beverages. This is comprehensive in providing a 15-year analysis of purchasing patterns of water based non-alcoholic beverages shows true trends and movement based on actual sales data.”

“This study highlights that Australians are now in fact consuming less kilojoules through water based beverages, with nearly one in two drinks consumed are now non-sugar varieties 42% volume share in 2011 compared to 30% in 1997.

Mr Parker said what should be encouraging for Australians is that the research suggests these trends would continue.


‘This is a very important shift in people’s beverage behaviour that is consistent with public health objectives,” he said.


“As an industry we will continue to lead the change by innovating in low kJ options, introducing smaller packs sizes, educating consumers on the importance of energy balance and providing fact- based nutrition labelling on our packs.”


Full research and media statement

140217 Quenching Aust Thirst RESPONSE

Media contact:

Geoff Parker – Chief Executive Officer, Australian Beverages Council

+61 (0)407 646 195


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