In 2012, total U.S. bottled water consumption increased to 9.67 billion gallons, up from 9.1 billion gallons in 2011. In fact, 2012's consumption growth was the strongest it has been in five years. In addition, per-capita consumption is up 5.3% in 2012, with every person in America drinking an average of 30.8 gallons of bottled water last year. Bottled water increased in absolute volume more than any other beverage category in the United States.
Bottled water sales increased by 6.7% in 2012, and now total $11.8 billion.
According to Gary Hemphill, managing director, information services, at BMC, "All signs point to U.S. consumers' already displayed thirst for bottled water continuing in the years ahead. Changes in per capita consumption indicate persistent interest in a product that consumers embrace as a healthful alternative to other beverages."
"Indeed, bottled water added more gallons to its per-person consumption rate in ten years than either ready-to-drink tea or sports beverages reached by the end of that period," he added. "In fact, neither even reached five gallons per U.S. consumer by 2012. Bottled water proved itself to be not only a key component of the liquid refreshment beverage market; it also proved itself to be poised for future increases in per capita consumption."
"People choose bottled water for a variety reasons," said Joe Doss, IBWA's president and CEO. "Many consumers are focusing on healthful choices for themselves and their families, and they know that safe, convenient, refreshing bottled water has zero calories and is the healthiest option on the shelf. They also appreciate the reliable, consistent quality of bottled water. And, despite continued efforts by some activist groups to discourage people from drinking bottled water, consumption and sales of this healthy product are increasing as consumers make their voices heard in the marketplace."