HONG KONG: Asia's beverage market will experience unprecedented growth over the next five years and is expected to account for nearly half (47.2%) of global commercial consumption in 2021, a new report has forecast.

Canadean, a global market research firm that specialises in the drinks industry, said that by contrast North America will have an 8.7% share of global beverage commercial consumption while Western Europe will account for 9.2%.

The combined share of these two mature markets accounted for nearly one-third of global beverage consumption in 2000, but this is expected to drop to 18% by 2021.

Indeed, in 2021, Canadean expects only three developed markets – the US, Japan and Germany – to feature in its top ten highest volume markets.

This marked shift to Asia is further underscored by Canadean's prediction that no fewer than six Asian markets will be among the top ten incremental volume providers by 2021.

These six countries – China, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, Thailand and Vietnam – are expected to account for two-thirds of global incremental beverage consumption, with China alone responsible for one-third of the additional volume.

Several factors are driving this worldwide trend, the report found. While limited access to good quality tap water in emerging markets might be an obvious reason for consumers to opt for bottled and canned drinks, other consumer habits are at play.

As explained by Antonella Reda, Product Development Manager at Canadean, there is growing awareness of health and wellbeing, increasing disposable incomes and strong demand, especially in China, for "on the go" energy drinks.

"There is an increasingly fast pace of life; rapid urbanisation in markets such as China; perceived functionality of energy drinks; strong marketing and communication strategies of the major players; and expanded distribution and the expansion of modern retail," she told BeverageDaily.com.

Soft drinks are seeing particularly strong growth in Asian markets, she added, but bulk and office delivered water is also growing strongly, currently at nearly 8%.

Data sourced from Canadean, BeverageDaily.com; additional content by Warc staff