The key sectors driving soft drinks growth include mineral water, fruit juices and one-shot drinks. Flavoured water (still and carbonated) is being driven by new buyers and price inflation.

Mineral water has continued to grow well this year with an 11% spend increase year-on-year. It now accounts for 9% of the soft drinks market and is attracting new buyers - it is currently being purchased by 17 million households. Consumers are also buying it more often with the average shopper purchasing mineral water at least once a month.

In line with a growth in the number of purchases, mineral water consumption is on the rise, with males under the age of 45 and children being the two consumer groups showing particularly good growth at 14% and 18% year-on-year respectively.

With children's health being a particularly big issue at the moment, mineral water is in an ideal position to capitalise on consumers looking for alternatives to carbonates.

Still water accounts for almost 46% of the bottled-water market and the sector is growing at 14% year-on-year. Still water gains from new and more frequent buyers as well as buyers switching from sparkling and flavoured water.

Carbonated water is struggling with a decline of 2.1% year-on-year. However, this decline has slowed down from the previous year. Looking at the reasons for consumption of all waters, sparkling water is the least likely to be chosen for health.

The carbonated drinks sector appears to be experiencing the most significant volume decline, which indicates people are becoming more health-conscious.

January is an interesting month for the mineral water market as consumers attempt to be healthier than they've been throughout the festive period. Consumers actually choose mineral water for health reasons on 33% of occasions, which makes it the most popular driver ahead of quenching thirst.

Soft drinks is a mature market and the key growth driver this year has been price inflation, which has been influenced by the cola sector and the growth of smoothies.

Sapna Sejpal, TNS Worldpanel