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The top trends 2024 on the beverage market


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In 2024, we can expect an exciting fusion of innovation, health awareness, sustainability – and artificial intelligence. Above all, price developments are expected to change consumer shopping behavior this year. AI is increasingly becoming an advisor to everyday issues, and what consumers love now is when their individual needs are addressed.

In 2024, AUSTRIA JUICE has defined four key trends that can have a lasting impact on the food and beverage industry:

  • Maximize my value
  • Hack my health
  • Sustainability is key
  • AI appetite

This year, the needs and expectations of consumers are primarily focused on finding as much value as possible in the products – be it for health, well-being or to protect the household budget. Here are the top four trends at a glance:

Maximize my value

The "Maximize my value" trend reflects the increasing consumer demand for beverages that not only quench thirst, but also offer additional benefits and are easy on the wallet. Many consumers are currently feeling the effects of inflation and are actively trying to reduce their spending on food and beverages. As consumers embrace these new buying habits, brand loyalty decreases. However, they also have a high sense of entitlement and strive to keep compromises to a minimum. They are looking for imaginative ways to cleverly minimize the risk of abandonment, for example by reducing food waste and taking advantage of promotional offers. Brands should respond by offering packaging innovations that extend shelf life or bring personalized promotional offers into play that are tailored to individual needs. ShopBack systems or subscription models, for example, are very promising.

According to FMCG Gurus, 42 percent of global consumers are increasingly using promotional offers, and 53 percent are actively looking for ways to reduce the cost of food and beverages. In addition, 63 percent say they are worried that rising prices could affect their health. While 77 percent are cutting back on spending in restaurants and cafés, 46 percent are increasingly turning to premium products in the supermarket in order to create a "restaurant experience" at home, for example together with friends.
Since the Corona crisis, meal kits have experienced a real hype. Many suppliers rely on the menus of renowned chefs, which consumers can prepare at home in just a few simple steps.
Sources: „Top Ten Trends for 2024”, FMCG Gurus “, Top Global Consumer Trends 2024”, Passport Euromonitor November 2023, Food Report 2024, Hanni Rützler

Not only consumers are looking for affordable products, but issues like inflation, rising energy costs, higher personnel costs and fluctuating raw material prices are putting food and beverage producers under a lot of pressure. AT AUSTRIA JUICE understand the demands of our customers all too well, especially those who produce beverages with a high fruit juice content. To meet the current challenges, AUSTRIA JUICE has developed an innovative cost-saving process that helps to protect your successful products.

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Hack my health

Increasing health awareness will once again be the focus of the "Hack my health" trend in 2024. Consumers are interested in how their beverages can support their physical and mental health. Functional beverages enriched with adaptogenic herbs, probiotics or other bioactive substances are gaining popularity.

The focus is on natural ingredients, natural flavours and a balanced nutrient profile to meet the needs of modern, health-conscious consumers.

According to FMCG Gurus, 45 percent of global consumers say they have seen an increase in interest in health-promoting foods over the past two years, and 75 percent find it important that these products are specifically tailored to their needs.

There is also the use of technology to develop tailored nutrition solutions that meet the individual nutritional needs and preferences of consumers. These innovations include the use of DNA testing technologies for product authenticity and traceability, as well as the development of personalized products based on genetic information.
Source: „Top Ten Trends for 2024”, FMCG Gurus

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Sustainability is key

Sustainability is no longer just a buzzword, but a decisive factor for consumers. The "sustainability is key" trend is also evident in the beverage market. Consumers prefer eco-friendly packaging, ethically produced ingredients, and companies that are committed to social and environmental responsibility. Beverage manufacturers are increasingly relying on recyclable packaging, renewable energy sources in production, and the use of regional and local ingredients to minimize the environmental footprint and protect the planet.

For decades, organic has led the debate on food quality. "This made the movement a significant innovator in the entire food sector," writes Hanni Rützler in her Food Report 2024, "Organic has written a success story from a niche and has arrived in the middle of society. Conventional products have come closer and closer to organic criteria." But now organic is to reach its limits: "What is needed is a taboo that combines technological innovations and ecological production."

According to Rützler, the focus of this trend is no longer on the question of what we have on our plates, but how we produce food. "Regenerative Food" focuses on the arable soil as the decisive key to a healthy ecosystem.

It's hardly surprising that the climate crisis is boosting the meatless lifestyle and that plant-based foods are experiencing abundant growth in every respect.
Sources: Food Report 2024, Hanni Rützler


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AI appetite

The use of artificial intelligence (AI) is revolutionizing the food and beverage market in the "AI appetite" trend. Companies are increasingly turning to machine learning and data analytics to understand consumer behavior and make personalized beverage recommendations. AI is also being used in production to optimize the manufacturing process, monitor quality, and develop innovative formulations. These personalized approaches allow companies to better understand their customers' needs and offer customized products.

At the same time, artificial intelligence and digital tools are increasingly becoming co-creators and "advisors" for consumers. They influence their decisions and change their expectations of brand interaction. Businesses should use generative AI to improve the customer experience.

While "Chat GPT" kicked things off in 2023 and initially caused amazement and curiosity, consumers want to deepen their knowledge and the possible uses of AI in their everyday lives.
According to Euromonitor's Passport, in 2024 generative AI will mainly help with data analysis, but will also enable even more targeted marketing, making chatbots the new normal in interacting with customers. Artificial intelligence is also expected to generate and improve more product images, videos and texts. In addition, AI is to be increasingly integrated into everyday planning and shopping, provide more insights into consumer behavior and improve supply chains. 28 percent of connected consumers buy goods and services after an influencer posts on YouTube. 42 percent of connected consumers find brand, company or product information on YouTube. At the same time, AI means that content creation is becoming easier, faster and more versatile. This also increases competition on social media. Artificial intelligence will become increasingly important in many areas and will set the tone.
Sources: “Top Global Consumer Trends 2024”, Passport Euromonitor November 2023

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The trends "Maximize my value", "Hack my health", "Sustainability is key" and "AI appetite" are the driving forces behind the changes in the beverage market in 2024. Consumers are looking for beverages that are not only refreshing, but also offer added value and – in times of rising inflation – are easy on the bank account. The health aspect is once again clearly emphasized by market analysts this year: consumers are increasingly interested in beverages that actively contribute to the maintenance of physical and mental health and provide specific ingredients. Sustainability is no longer a fad, but a decisive purchasing factor for consumers. Companies that focus on eco-friendly packaging, ethical production and regenerative approaches are in high demand. In addition, machine learning and data analytics through AI are revolutionizing not only product development and production, but also how consumers interact. Personalized recommendations and the impact of AI on the customer experience are crucial aspects that will continue to shape 2024.

Cornelia KerschbaumerAuthor

Director of Marketing & Communication


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