Beverage Industry

Functional Drinks – Lucrative Market for Beverage Business in 2024

functional drinks

Consumers increasingly choose functional drinks. That’s right, it not only provides refreshing refreshment but also solves your desired needs such as alertness, nutritional supplements, and bursts of energy… who doesn’t want to drink delicious drinks but also good for your health?

functional drinks

What are functional drinks

Functional drinks are beverages that are formulated with specific ingredients to provide additional health benefits beyond basic nutrition or hydration. These drinks often contain added vitamins, minerals, herbs, botanicals, amino acids, or other bioactive compounds that are believed to support various aspects of health, such as energy levels, cognitive function, immune support, or stress reduction.

The growing demand for functional beverages stems from the fact that consumers no longer view beverages simply as thirst quenchers but as health products containing specific levels of ingredients that create a part of their lifestyle.

Some of the health benefits that functional beverages bring to consumers include:

Prevent coronary heart disease.

High levels of “bad” cholesterol in the blood are often associated with a higher risk of coronary heart disease. According to in vitro studies, functional beverages containing probiotics reduce “bad” cholesterol levels in the blood by deconjugation of bile acids and subsequent precipitation of cholesterol and bile acids or by absorption, of cholesterol with probiotic strains. Reducing “bad” cholesterol levels will then minimize the risk of coronary heart disease.

Prevent colon cancer.

Although not the only factor, eating a lot of red meat is thought to play a major role in the development of colon cancer. This is due to the formation of genotoxic carcinogens such as heterocyclic aromatic amines during meat cooking and the transformation of meat protein residues by bacterial enzymes such as NADPH dehydrogenase, nitroreductase, β- glucosidase, β-glucuronidase or 7-α- dehydroxylase into toxic and genotoxic compounds. These enzymes are more expressed in bacteria, for example Enterobacteria, Bacteroides and Clostridia. Functional drinks containing probiotics create an inhospitable environment for the above-mentioned bacteria, limiting the availability of the above-mentioned enzymes.

Treatment of inflammatory bowel disease.

Inflammatory bowel disease includes Crohn’s disease, pouchitis, and ulcerative colitis. They occur due to an aggravated cell-mediated immune response from the host to commensal bacteria in allergic individuals. This leads to a reduction in Lactobacilli and Bifidobacteria in the normal flora. Functional beverages made from fiber restore Lactobacilli and Bifidobacteria populations, thereby treating IBD.

Treat food allergies.

Two types of cells govern immunity; Th1 and Th2 cells. Th1 cells are responsible for cell-mediated immunity. On the other hand, Th2 cells are responsible for antibody production. An imbalance in the Th1/Th2 response to exogenous antigens may direct the mechanism of parasitic infection towards the production of antibodies that can bind to food or respiratory antigens, causing a response including dilatation. Functional drinks with certain strains of probiotics help treat allergies. Functional beverages made from fiber promote the growth of microbial strains.

Other health benefits are Reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes, Strengthening the immune system, Treats lactose intolerance. Prevention and treatment of Helicobacter Pylori infection and Treatment and prevention of diarrhea.

Types of Functional Beverages

type of functional beverage

Functional beverages encompass a wide range of drinks designed to provide specific health benefits beyond basic hydration. Here are some common types of functional beverages:

Energy Drinks

 These beverages typically contain caffeine, taurine, B-vitamins, and sometimes herbal extracts or amino acids to provide a quick energy boost and enhance alertness.

Sports Drinks

 Formulated to replenish electrolytes lost during physical activity, sports drinks contain minerals like sodium, potassium, and sometimes carbohydrates to support hydration and muscle function.

Protein Shakes

Often consumed by athletes or fitness enthusiasts, protein shakes provide a convenient way to increase protein intake, supporting muscle repair and growth.

Meal Replacement Drinks

These functional drinks are designed to serve as a substitute for a meal and usually contain a balance of macronutrients (proteins, carbohydrates, and fats) along with vitamins and minerals.

Enhanced Waters

These are fortified with vitamins, minerals, electrolytes, or other nutrients to provide additional health benefits beyond plain water.

Functional Teas

Including green tea, herbal teas, and specialty blends that may contain ingredients like antioxidants, polyphenols, or herbs believed to promote health and well-being.

Probiotic Beverages

These drinks contain live beneficial bacteria (probiotics) intended to support gut health and digestion.

Prebiotic Beverages

Unlike probiotics, prebiotics are non-digestible fibers that serve as food for beneficial gut bacteria. Prebiotic beverages may contain ingredients like inulin or oligosaccharides. 

If you need a function beverage contain prebiotic for your business, you may want to check out our cocogurt drinks wholesale. This is one of plant-base coconut yourgurt drink with nata de coco:


Relaxation Drinks

 Formulated with ingredients like chamomile, valerian root, or L-theanine to promote relaxation, reduce stress, and support better sleep.

Cognitive Enhancement Drinks

These functional drinks often contain ingredients like omega-3 fatty acids, choline, or certain vitamins and minerals thought to support brain function, memory, and mental clarity.

Adaptogenic Beverages

Adaptogens are herbs or botanicals believed to help the body adapt to stress. Beverages containing adaptogens like ashwagandha, rhodiola, or holy basil are marketed for stress relief and overall well-being.

These are just a few examples, and the functional beverage market continues to expand with new formulations and ingredients targeting various health concerns and consumer preferences.

The functional beverage market grows

Functional beverage market analysis

As the beverage trend in 2024, the Functional Beverages Market size is estimated to reach USD 213.74 billion by 2024 and is expected to reach USD 306.76 billion by 2029, growing at a CAGR of 7.49% during the forecast period ( 2024-2029). Consumers are moving towards beverages with functional benefits, influenced primarily by health and wellness trends. Functional drinks that contain protein and are said to boost energy are increasingly popular, especially among sports enthusiasts.

  The main customers are young people because they have a modern lifestyle, creating a need to compensate for energy and health supplements due to potential risks from the food they consume every day. Furthermore, digestive health is likely to be the next functional crowd-pleaser, and consumers are willing to pay a premium. Therefore, brands can take advantage of the opportunity to expand their product portfolio and consumer base. Because the functional beverage market is highly competitive, manufacturers must keep up with changing consumer needs and deliver innovation with the scientifically proven benefits of powerful active ingredients. to stand out. For example, in October 2023, PepsiCo Inc.’s Tropicana brand. has launched two new smoothie flavors containing Vitamin C. Tropicana Smoothie Pineapple & Mango and Strawberry & Banana products will be retailed across India at all distribution channels operating in the market.

The trend is toward milk and milk substitutes

Growing demand for probiotic beverages among health-conscious consumers is majorly driving the market. The growing functional drinks trend towards vegetarianism further increases the demand for plant-based functional dairy products. Plant-based milk analogs may lack some of the nutritional benefits of milk. Therefore, the manufacturer has combined micronutrients such as vitamins B12, D and calcium to enhance the nutritional value of the product.

The market is driven by the availability of a wide range of flavors and packaging designs, growing consumer preference for exotic flavors and significant investments by manufacturers. For example, in June 2022, Danone North America launched the multi-benefit probiotic yogurt drink Activia+, which includes billions of live, active probiotics to support gut health. The product is a rich source of zinc and vitamins D and C.

Asia market- Big chance for beverage business

Due to high diabetes rates in countries such as India and China, consumers are increasingly aware of the importance of a healthy diet and active lifestyle. So some companies are committed to eliminating artificial ingredients and reducing sugar content in their products. For example, in 2023, Monster Energy launched Monster Energy Zero Sugar globally. It is claimed to contain 100% Monster and 0% sugar and has 160 mg of caffeine. It is further contended that consuming Monster Energy Zero Sugar helps fight fatigue and improves mental performance and concentration.

Australia is one of the important markets for functional beverages in Asia-Pacific. Consumer preference for low-sugar drinks is growing as they become more conscious about their food and beverages. Players also emphasize providing consumers with novel options while incorporating valuable ingredients into each of their items. For example, in August 2023, Straight Up Energy, which operates in Australia, launched a new energy drink in three flavors: Green Apple, Mango and Passion Fruit, and Watermelon and Pineapple. 


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