The bottled water category has continued to keep up its momentum, achieving double digit growth during 2001. Its value growth hit 16.4%, driven by an increase in the number of households trying the category last year. An additional 1.3 million households tried mineral water at least once during the year. The best performance in terms of penetration came from the still sector, which saw an increase of nearly 6%, although all sectors have gained. Own label dominates the category, but not significantly, with a 54% share of expenditure. The table also shows the percentage of expenditure by consumers attributed to some kind of offer mechanism. With the exception of sparkling water, all other sectors have increased levels during 2001. Although the levels of flavoured and sparkling dominate, when we look at the promotional profile of these consumers, the promotion junkies appear across all sectors. They are very organised promotions shoppers who get a buzz out of shopping for the lowest price. Another way of understanding the consumers that shop the soft drinks categories is through ACNielsen's Food Focus, an attitudinal segmentation based on cooking and eating. Here we see two clearly distinct profiles within the sectors; sparkling and flavoured waters are more likely than average to be shopped by adventurous, affluent people known as Gourmet Go Getters. Food is their greatest pleasure and they are experimental in the kitchen. There is no doubt that these types of brands add excitement to their meals. On the other hand still and non-flavoured waters appeal most to what we call the Nut Roast Nutritionists ­ consumers who like to eat healthily and be nutritionally aware. It is not surprising that these basic waters with little or no additives appeal to their lifestyle. This deeper understanding about consumers should enable the mineral water manufacturers to continue to build on the success of the category, not only ensuring they continue to meet the needs of existing consumers but also tapping into the large number of households that as yet have not tried. Commentary: ACNielsen the response to special offers Penetration % of expenditure (% of households) on special offer Sector split 2000 2001 2000 2001 Sparkling 38.9 41.1 51.0 40.6 Still 36.4 42.2 16.4 17.8 Flavoured 30.6 35.2 47.4 53.5 Non-flavoured 41.3 45.7 14.0 16.5 Total mineral waters 55.1 59.9 24.5 28.8 {{FOCUS SPECIALS }}