Why is the Fruit-based Beverage Industry Growing in India?

The fruit-based beverage industry in India is growing. What can FMCG start-ups in this sector do to capitalise on the demand?

The fruit-based beverage industry in India has been growing silently. Innovation is driving the arrival of new and unique products in the market. The consumer demand for these products is high. There are two main reasons why fruit-based beverages have suddenly become popular with the masses:

  • Health & wellness conscious consumers are perceiving packaged drinks as safe choices over fresh fruit juices.
  • Sheer number of unique and innovative packaged fruit juices in the market with interesting ingredients and attractive packaging. 

Every year, the summers seem to be getting hotter than the last. This ever-growing demand has silently increased sales of beverage companies year on year.

What are the growth drivers for the fruit-based beverage industry?

The summer months are some of the best for the fruit-based beverage industry. Every year, the summers seem to be getting hotter than the last. This ever-growing demand has silently increased sales of beverage companies year on year.

Parle Agro, for instance, the makers of Frooti and Appy Fizz are already prepared for the highest demand yet in the Summer of 2021. They have already set aside 240 crores for marketing in 2021. 

Soaring temperatures

Soaring temperatures are a major growth driver for this industry. Fruit-based beverage start-ups need to come up with refreshing products to capitalise on the high demand during the summer months. 

Health-conscious consumer needs

Consumers have finally realised the need to keep away from sodas and colas. Organic, cold-pressed fruit juices are in high demand because they are viewed as healthier alternatives over fizzy sodas. Big FMCG companies have hurriedly launched a number of unique fruit juice products to get a sizeable chunk of this demand. 

In fact, small juice brands have been acquired for large sums of money by big FMCG firms. 

Raw Pressery, a Mumbai-based organic juice start-up was recently acquired by Wingreen Farms for INR 100 Cr. Although this deal was not very impressive, several other juice brands have recently been acquired by FMCG giants as the demand for healthy fruit-based beverages is increasing rapidly. 

How MSME’s should respond to this growth?

With all the lockdowns and curfews in place, summer 2021 will see fewer people stepping out to buy a refreshing packed fruit drink. To get around this problem, MSME’s in the fruit-based beverage industry must think about launching their products online. 

Since people will be stepping out less often, MSME’s can redirect the lost sales to an online channel. 

Offering unique products with a healthy proposition

Consumer needs in fruit-based beverages are leaning towards fibre-rich, healthy product choices. Consumers are also interested in unique product offerings in terms of flavours and ingredients. 

What’s in it for me?

The fruit drink market in India is evolving and start-ups in this sector need to have a solid marketing budget. Mainly because the competition from legacy fruit beverage brands is high and they are doing aggressive marketing to capture sales. 

The challenge is that the summertime which saw high retail sales of packaged fruit beverage products has been impacted due to people stepping out less frequently.

To drive sales, fruit beverage start-ups need to go into online distribution. This is because customers still have a strong need for nutritious, refreshing, packaged beverages and are willing to purchase online. 

Digital and social media marketing campaigns can drive sales. Attractive ad campaigns can help you connect with customers. A good example for this is ‘Paper Boat’, a Bengaluru-based packed fruit beverage start-up. This start-up gained immediate success due to its nostalgia-inducing marketing campaigns, flavours holding sentimental value to target customers, and attractive packaging. 

Anju Nambiar
Anju Nambiar
Anju has 5 years of experience covering business. She writes on startups, business life cycle and startup ecosystem. Her stints include Amazon and Adjetter Media Network.



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