Supermarkets would deliver £20m in incremental sales to the £157m adult soft drinks market [Kantar Worldpanel 52w/e 30 September] if the category was extended beyond Christmas, according to new research commissioned by Schloer.

Analysis revealed volume sales of Shloer grew, on average, by 180% when promoted during part of their promotional programme for events like Mother’s Day, bank holidays and Bonfire Night.

Retailers who stepped up visibility of the brand during the Jubilee weekend had seen sales volume triple, it added, and promoting adult soft drinks during 13 key events outside Christmas could grow the category by 13%.

“With the exception of Christmas and perhaps Easter, adult soft drinks tend to get overlooked, with the promotional focus put on other drinks such as beers, wine and cola,” said Shloer marketing head Amanda Grabham. “There are so many other social occasions when families and friends get together.”

The company pointed out that 18% of the adult population did not drink alcohol [TGI July 2011], and adult soft drinks provided an alternative to fruit juice, cola or water.

Volume sales growth of adult soft drinks accelerated from the 5.4% recorded a year ago to 14.8% in the 12 months to 30 September 2012, according to Kantar Worldpanel data.

“We have seen consistent growth in penetration, which has reached 47.9% of the population,” added consumer research analyst Gareth Davey..