Top 10 functional beverage trends shaping the industry in 2024

October 3, 20232 min
Lauren Daniels photo
Lauren Daniels Tastewise

At Tastewise, you’ll discover the top 10 functional beverage consumer trends for food-producing companies, including plant-based, probiotics, energy drinks, and more.

The functional beverage market is experiencing rapid growth, driven by consumers’ increasing desire for products offering added health benefits alongside their taste and refreshment needs. To stay competitive and capture the constantly changing preferences of their target audiences, food-producing companies must understand and incorporate the driving trends in the industry.

As we approach 2024, companies like Pepsi, Kraft, Ferrero, and others must stay informed of these trends and adapt their product development and marketing strategies accordingly.

We’ll look at the top 10 functional beverage consumer trends predicted to dominate the industry in 2024. These trends include plant-based beverages, probiotic and fermented drinks, energy and performance drinks, functional waters, natural and organic beverages, cold-pressed juices, cognitive-enhancing drinks, protein, and fitness drinks, beauty and collagen drinks, and relaxation and stress-relief drinks.

In looking at these trends in detail, food-producing companies can identify opportunities for product innovation and develop marketing campaigns that resonate with the changing tastes of their customers.

Tastewise empowers businesses to innovate faster, market better, and grow sales by offering invaluable food intelligence for the AI-connected world. By using data-driven insights and in-depth market analysis provided by platforms like Tastewise, food-producing companies can stay on the cutting edge of emerging functional beverage trends, seize opportunities for product innovation, and achieve long-term success in this dynamic market.

In the following sections, we’ll look at each of the top 10 functional beverage trends in detail, providing valuable insights and recommendations to help food-producing companies develop products that cater to the preferences and expectations of today’s discerning consumers. With a keen understanding of these trends and the strategies needed to capitalize on them, companies can foster a successful, innovative product portfolio that positions them for continued growth in the ever-changing functional beverage market.

Plant-based beverages: Meeting the demand for dairy alternatives
The rising popularity of plant-based diets is reflected in the consumer preference for plant-based beverages. As such, food-producing companies must expand their product offerings to include dairy alternatives, such as almond milk, oat milk, and coconut milk. These alternatives cater to the growing demand for eco-friendly, sustainably sourced, healthier beverage options. By tapping into this market, companies can increase their product variety and reach a broader audience looking for more environmentally conscious and health-focused options.

The power of probiotics and fermented drinks on gut health
Gut health is emerging as a vital aspect of overall wellness, with probiotic and fermented drinks increasingly sought after by consumers for their potential digestive benefits. Kombucha, kefir, and other beverages containing live bacteria cultures or fermentation have become popular choices for promoting gut health.

Food-producing companies should invest in research and development to create products with documented health benefits while promoting these benefits to consumers. Capitalizing on consumer interest in products promoting gut health and digestion offers a chance for companies to position themselves as leaders in the functional beverage market.

Natural energy and performance drinks for stamina boost
Consumers are increasingly interested in functional beverages that provide an energy boost and enhance physical performance without excessive caffeine or artificial stimulants. As a result, products featuring natural energizers like green tea, yerba mate, or ginseng have gained traction in the market.

Companies must adapt to this shift by developing and promoting natural, healthy alternatives to traditional energy drinks. Positioning these products as providing sustained energy will be crucial in attracting and retaining health-conscious customers.

Functional waters and the appeal of natural, organic beverages
The popularity of functional waters infused with vitamins, minerals, or electrolytes has soared among consumers seeking added health benefits and hydration. At the same time, the demand for natural and organic functional beverages has also grown, with consumers increasingly avoiding artificial additives, flavors, and sweeteners. To address this trend, companies should invest in product development that focuses on clean and high-quality ingredients while delivering the desired functional benefits.

Partnering with farmers and suppliers to source natural and organic ingredients will be critical as consumers place greater importance on transparency and sustainability. Emphasizing these attributes in labeling and marketing campaigns will help companies gain consumer trust and attract those seeking healthier beverage options.

As the functional beverage market evolves, food and beverage companies must adapt to the trends shaping consumer preferences. Plant-based alternatives, probiotic and fermented beverages, natural energy and performance drinks, and functional waters infused with vitamins, minerals, or electrolytes represent key growth areas that businesses should consider when expanding their product offerings.

Moreover, the increasing consumer interest in natural, organic ingredients and sustainable practices offers numerous opportunities for differentiation and brand positioning. By staying informed about these trends and incorporating them into their product lineups and marketing strategies, companies like Pepsi, Kraft, Ferrero, and others can maintain a competitive edge and drive growth in the thriving functional beverage market. Get in touch with Tastewise for more information about our food service marketing solutions.

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