Still water continues to hold the largest market share in RTD bottled water at 74.5%, with the total market at an estimated value of $303bn in 2022.
With an innate health halo, bottled water not only offers consumers with a convenient hydration solution, but domestic sourcing from municipalities and facilities around the US, lowers both price and carbon footprint for retailers and consumers.
The functionalities and (lack of) taste in Perfect Hydration’s water has gained visibility among the fitness industry, especially as a national sponsor of the CrossFit Games. Its packaging offers a wide mouth opening “that athletes really enjoy,” Louisa Lawless, chief strategy officer, Perfect Hydration told FoodNavigator-USA during the show. She cited how consumers are also adding in different powder and liquid enhancements for additional functionality, while the contoured bottle is ideal for cup holders for consumers on the go.
Lawless said the higher alkaline level contributes to a smoother mouthfeel, neutralizes stomach acids and aids faster hydration than spring water.
Lawless added that the nine-time filtration process contributes to the taste of the water, as well as added electrolytes and minerals for enhanced hydration. “Ultimately you don’t want to taste anything when you’re drinking water. You don’t want to taste minerals or additives," she explained.
The company’s alkaline water contains a 9.5 pH, where the industry standard has been lower, Lawless explained. “9.5 is typically where your body rests for alkalinity,” she added.
The brand’s refresh will focus on “building brand equity for retail partners so that it looks more fitness oriented and contemporary; as well as calling out the recycled plastic claim in green in the lower right hand panel.”
With different bottle sizes to support water intake—a 20 ounce, 1.5 liter, 1 gallon and in Q1 2024, a 16-ounce resealable aluminum bottle—retailers have an opportunity to cater to consumers’ varied usage occasions.
While c-stores, grocery stores and club stores primarily carry Perfect Hydration, Lawless said that the brand anticipates more opportunities in food service channels with its 12-pack.
“The resources that we need can be found domestically”
Sustainability initiatives from recycled bottling and sourcing local water are paramount to the company, which is based in Southern California where plastic bans and droughts are pushing companies to pursue more productive, sustainable initiatives.
The company works with a local California-based facility that cleans, treats and reuses recycled plastic bottles, highlighting the recycled plastic claim in the revamped packaging.
Lawless explained that Perfect Hydration sources and purifies its water from municipal waters, “so it’s less moving trucks on the road that add to the carbon footprint…and keeping things localized so that our co-packing network keeps trucks as consolidated as possible, and hopefully pass those savings to our retail partners.”
Sourcing from municipalities allows for the brand to use existing resources.
“The resources that we need can be found domestically. I think there’s been a real awakening on that. You don’t need to bring water from a spring across the world…we have as much as we possibly can muster with sustainable sourcing. Springs are being overused as well,” she added.