Cans grow market share at the expense of bottles

Canned drinks continue their upward march and significantly increased their market share at the expense of glass and PET over the past year.

Nielsen data for the year to June shows canned drinks sales grew 5%, cementing their status as the most popular packaging format in the UK. 

In the same period, glass bottled drink sales fell 9% and the PET category was down 5%.

Marcel Arsand, chairman of trade body Can Makers, said: “Cans are a great choice for drinks brands, retailers and consumers alike. 

“We expect to continue to see greater interest in the drink cans pack format after witnessing the success craft beer in cans has enjoyed.

“Not only are cans convenient and easy to chill, they are also infinitely recyclable. This means consumers can enjoy their favourite drink in packaging that can be back on the shelf as another drinks can in as little as eight weeks.”

In the UK, 72% of all aluminium cans sold were recycled back into other products in 2017.

Can Makers attributes the growth to a change in perception, with more consumers viewing canned beverages as premium products. 

It hailed the convenience and portability of cans, and noted concern over the environmental impact of glass and plastic bottles as benefiting canned sales.

In the year to June, cans increased their market share by 6%, with beer and cider driving the trend.

Craft beer in cans grew 66%, while bottled craft beer fell 3%, illustrating just how much the American craft beer influence has changed Brits’ perceptions of the 33cl can.

Flavoured ciders in cans have seen a 6% increase compared to sales last year, with producers such as Kopparberg championing the format. 

Canned premium ale is also a significant growth category, with Old Speckled Hen, Abbot, Hobgoblin, Tanglefoot and Newcastle Brown Ale all enjoying a strong spike in sales over the past year.

Related articles: