KResearch projects that sales of non-alcoholic beverages (excluding those via food service) will grow 4.0 - 6.0% in 2023, down from the high base of 7.4% reported for 2022. Although the sales of non-alcoholic drinks via various retail outlets will continue to increase due to the recovery in outdoor activities and tourism, their prices may decline as some consumers have increasingly switched to non-alcoholic beverages sold via food service.
Aside from the economic rebound, the revival of marketing and advertising drives is another important factor helping stimulate the overall sales of non-alcoholic drinks, particularly new products that producers want to build brand awareness or increase confidence among consumers. This is reflected in the non-alcoholic beverage business that has approximately THB20 (on average from 2018-2021) in sales and service expenses (including advertising or marketing) for every THB100 of revenue, which is higher than the THB12 for those in the food business. According to a survey conducted by KResearch, it is found that functional beverages still have market opportunities from the rising health-conscious trend after COVID-19. More than 84% of respondents choose to buy functional beverages, the most among all non-alcoholic beverages, and the functional drinks that respondents are interested in buying more mainly are specific healthy drinks, with more than 50% of respondents willing to pay THB5 more than the current prices. Ultimately, the prices that customers are willing to pay depend largely on the value-for-money perspective.
Looking ahead, although non-alcoholic beverages are considered healthy, their consumption frequency may not increase. Moreover, the life-cycle of non-alcoholic beverages has become shorter. As consumers change their behavior quickly due to many choices available while competition in the business remains intense, non-alcoholic beverage producers are facing challenges in bolstering sales of non-alcoholic beverages.
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