The hottest drink in America is water with bubbles.
Long a kitchen table staple in European households, sparkling water is making inroads in the U.S. thanks largely to Americans’ waning interest in soda. Between 2009 and 2014, the volume of carbonated bottled water sold in the U.S. has increased by 56.4 percent, according to data from Euromonitor International, a market research firm. Soda drinking declined sharply during the same period.
Still, sparkling water sales are a fraction of soda sales. The U.S. soda market is worth about $39 billion, according to Euromonitor. The market for unflavored sparkling water, flavored sparkling water and “functional” water — a category that includes flavored still water and enhanced still water like Smartwater — is just $4 billion.
It has a way to go before it catches up to soda, but sparkling water is indeed having a moment.