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ALEXANDRIA, VA -- Overall consumption of bottled water increased by 3.5% in 2010 after two years of declines. The latest data compiled by New York City's Beverage Marketing Corp. for the International Bottled Water Association also suggest the bottled water category's overall share of the liquid refreshment beverages marketplace grew slightly to 30%, up from approximately 29.2% in 2009.
In 2010, total bottled water consumption increased to 8.75 billion gallons, up from 8.45 billion gallons in 2009, according to the report. Per-capita consumption grew 2.6%, with "every" person in America drinking an average of 28.3 gallons of bottled water last year.
The overall U.S. refreshment beverage category grew by 1.2% in 2010 after two years of a recession-based downturn, according to BMC. Currently, carbonated soft drinks command a 23% market share, down slightly from 2009, while bottled water's market share grew to 15%. BMC attributed the uptick in bottled water’s market share in 2010 to increased consumer interest in healthy, calorie-free beverages and loosened spending habits as the economy began to show signs of recovery.
"While economic times are still tough for many, the consumption of healthy bottled water continues to be a part of their lifestyle," said IBWA president and chief executive Joe Doss. "Even during the past two slow economic years, bottled water consumption decreased less than most other major beverage categories. The steady market share increase we now are experiencing is because consumers are choosing safe, high-quality bottled water over other packaged beverages."