Progressive Grocer + IRI: Tea Among Fastest Growing, Highest Volume Beverages

P r o g r e s s i v e G r o c e r + I R I : T e a A m o n g F a s t e s t G r o w i n g , H i g h e s t V o l u m e B e v e r a g e s

Progressive Grocer and IRI recently released their 73rd Annual Consumer Expenditures Report, revealing tea as one of the fastest growing and highest volume-moving beverages in grocery retail.

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Some of the highlights include:

  • Tea saw a 19.5% increase in sales over the previous year, reaching dollar sales of nearly $840 million
  • Tea sales growth outpaced that of sports drinks and did more volume than juices
  • Instant teas as a separate category grew by 18.8%

Grocery tea sales increased by 19.5%, with store brand teas as an important driver

Recent trends in private label that support tea growth:

  • 2020 import data coincides with consumer preferences for healthy green teas over traditional black tea blends

Store brand teas have also upped their game, focusing more on:

  • Certified teas – USDA Organic, Fair Trade, Non-GMO, and free-from claims
  • Flavor + Function – movement beyond the basic flavors towards teas for digestion, relaxation, and other benefits

Considering that approximately 75% of the items in a grocery store carries are “slow-moving,” these boosts in tea sales cannot be ignored.