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6 Top Soft Drinks Trends in 2020 

The food and drink industry is evolving at a rapid pace. And any manufacturer or restaurant owner should be aware of new drinks trends on the horizon, for menu and product planning and inspiration. The soft drinks market is diverse and encompasses sectors from fruit juices to fizzy drinks. Here we take a look at some of the trends that are bringing a new wave of innovative beverages to the shelves right now.  

1. Traditional (With a Twist) Remains Current

The market for new and unusual flavours and combinations is huge, but the traditional favourites will remain popular alongside these new drinks. However, there could be a new twist to the old; blood orange instead of regular orange juice, for example, or different types of zingy lime and lemon. Fruit puree suppliers are reporting strong demand for citrus drinks with a modern update. 

2. Soft Drinks for a Healthier Gut

It’s all about the gut – and how intestinal health impacts the overall well-being of the body. The drinks industry has been slower to implement gut-friendly ingredients in its products but this is a trend that is set to soar in the coming months. There are already well-established gut-friendly dairy drinks such as prebiotic and probiotic yoghurt drinks, but the popularity of fermented drinks such as kefir and kombucha is on the rise.

3. Sour Flavours Reign Supreme

As mentioned above, kombucha and other fermented drinks are rising in popularity with their distinctly bitter flavours. The market is shifting away from intensely sweet drinks in favour of healthier blends and tangy flavours. Sour cherry is a good example of the rise of the sour drink. Drinks that mix sour and sweet flavours are also popular. 

4. Low Alcohol Preferences

Low alcohol and no alcohol drinks are climbing high in the popularity stakes, due to health concerns as well as a wish to avoid lots of calories in alcoholic and sweet fruit juices. The range of mocktails is larger than ever before, and there’s a new range of fruit vinegars and fruit beers with minimal alcohol to tempt people in the summer months. 

5. Rise of Functional Water

Functional water, which is water with added health benefits, has been a fixture for several years now. The range of functional waters is widening, however, and there are functional water products that claim to help with boosting vitamin intake, decreasing inflammation, and increasing alertness, among others. 

6. Cold Brew and Artisanal Coffee

Coffee was once a simple drink made from instant granules. Today it is available in such a wide variety of forms it is hardly recognisable. Cold-brew coffee increases in demand every year. Iced coffee has been around for a long time but now can be found in more innovative flavour combinations. Artisanal coffee and fair trade coffee are gaining market share and are increasingly popular with ethically-minded consumers. And the winter market for coffee is also strong, with a range of new flavours developed every season, including the addition of alcoholic and non-alcoholic syrups.