Only 2 yuan! Natural mineral water takes turns to "force the palace" Nongfu Spring Wahaha


Only 2 yuan! Natural mineral water takes turns to "force the palace" Nongfu Spring Wahaha

Image source: Ipoh "Benyou"

The price of new mineral water products continues to drop, and the bottled water market may usher in a new pattern.

Ipoh has recently made new moves in the field of mineral water. Ipoh official Weibo shows that Ipoh recently launched a brand-new mineral water brand "Benyou", which includes two specifications of 350 ml and 555 ml. At present, it has been officially listed and priced in the most mainstream 2 yuan range of bottled water.

According to reports, the positioning of "Benyou" is a simple and fashionable drinking natural mineral water that satisfies consumers’ daily thirst quenching and has a sense of closeness. On the consumer side, not all consumers can know the difference between mineral water and pure water. However, Ipoh dropped the price of mineral water to 2 yuan market after Master Kong, which means that the price boundary between mineral water, natural water and purified water is blurring.
Image source: Ipoh Guanwei

As early as 2018, the retail price of Master Kong’s packaged drinking water terminal increased from 1 yuan to 2 yuan. At this point, the water age of bottled water in 1 yuan has completely ended, and the mainstream price of domestic bottled water has entered the 2 yuan range, but within this range, mineral water products are rare. For natural aquatic products, enterprises are required to lay out water sources in advance, and natural mineral water is required to obtain mineral water mining licenses at the same time, and mineral water categories have higher requirements for water sources and mineral water mining licenses.

However, in March this year, in March this year, Master Kong introduced a new bottled water product called "Drinking Mineral Springs", which was priced at a bottle of 2 yuan. It can be seen that the mineral water brand "Benyou" recently launched by Ipoh is also breaking through the 2 yuan water track. This means that mineral water products, which were originally priced higher than pure water, are exploring the market price boundary.

Ipoh and Master Kong have successively launched 2 yuan mineral water. In the price belt market in 2 yuan, the competition for drinking water will be more intense.

With the debut of pure water, Ipoh’s bottled water business has always been mainly based on pure water. Since last year, Ipoh has launched the high-end mineral water "Ipoh Dew" for the first time at a price of one bottle in 15 yuan, which can be said to be a luxury in drinking water. The mineral water brand "Benyou" launched this time is priced in 2 yuan and has the characteristics of "being close to the people".

Specifically, this time, "Benyou" launched different specifications of PET plastic bottles, including 555 ml and 350 ml, which were priced in 2 yuan and 1.5 yuan respectively. Among them, the 350 ml mini bottle is mainly portable when going out to meet the female group with a small amount of disposable drinking.

In the direction of supply chain, Ipoh has also increased its efforts. It is understood that in February this year, the commissioning ceremony of China Resources Ipoh East China Production Base was held in Yixing, Jiangsu Province. After all the production, it will become the first all-product factory of China Resources Ipoh, covering 8 mainstream drinks such as packaged water, near-water drinks, sports drinks, milk tea, coffee, fruit juice, tea drinks and lactic acid bacteria drinks, with an annual production capacity of nearly 200 million cases.

From pure water to mineral water, Ipoh launched "Benyou" in 2 yuan, which continued to open the price war in the mineral water market.

In fact, mineral water prices in 2 yuan are rare.

First of all, the 2 yuan price band is the main product price range of Ipoh Pure Water. However, in bottled water, the price range of brand products represented by ice dew, Wahaha and Master Kong pure water is usually within 1.5 yuan, and natural water is in 1.5 yuan, while the price of natural mineral water is usually higher than that of 2 yuan.

At present, among the domestic mineral water brands, Jinmailang’s Jinmao, Yuanqi Forest’s Mined, Changbaixue, Tongyi Aikua and Baisui Mountain are all above 3 yuan and 3 yuan, while 2 yuan’s mineral water brands are few.

At the same time, the market size of mineral water market is larger than that of pure water. Packaging drinking water is divided into natural water, natural mineral water, drinking pure water and other drinking water according to the different water sources. Because there is no restriction on the source of drinking pure water, according to Jost Sullivan’s report, drinking pure water is the largest market at present, which is 119.1 billion yuan in 2019, accounting for 60.4%.

According to Jost Sullivan’s data, from 2014 to 2019, the compound annual growth rates of natural water and natural mineral water were 24.8% and 18.4% respectively, and the CAGR of retail sales was 29.1% and 19.0% respectively. It is estimated that the compound annual growth rates of natural water and natural mineral water will be 15.4% and 14.2% respectively from 2019 to 2024.

The sales growth rate of natural water and mineral water is expected to be faster than that of pure water. According to the Annual Report on Mineral Water Consumption Trends in 2022, the sales growth rates of mineral water, drinking natural water and purified water were 43%, 35% and 31% respectively, and the growth rate of purified water was the lowest.

Judging from the domestic bottled water market share, the head brand has a high market share and market concentration. The market share is the highest, followed by China Resources Ipoh. The bottled water market share of the top six enterprises has exceeded 80% of all domestic markets.

Since the beginning of this year, in the bottled water market, most brands have not made large-scale new moves for mineral water tracks, but the new products and brand upgrades for this are very lively.

Zong Qinghou once said that the beverage industry is out of date and will always be a sunrise industry. Bottled water companies also want to use mineral water to make a "turnaround" of water.

From the price point of view, the average price of natural mineral water is above 4.5 yuan /500ml because it is rich in natural substances, while the average price of drinking pure water is around 1.5 yuan /500ml, and the prices of mineral water products promoted by major brands this year are mostly above 3 yuan.

It was Master Kong who started the price war and launched "Drinking Mineral Springs" in March 2023. The Tmall platform shows that Master Kong’s "drinking mineral spring" that has been sold at present includes four kinds of packages, the specification is 550ml, and the price is 23.9 yuan /12 bottles, about 2 yuan/bottle;

In April, Yuehuo, a high-end drinking water brand owned by COFCO, announced the launch of "Yuehuo Changbai Mountain" natural mineral water, which is another mineral water that takes water from local water sources after "Yuehuo Emei Mountain" natural mineral water, and will focus on home life scenes. The packaging is 500ml specifications, and the terminal will implement the price of 3-4 yuan in different regions;

In mid-May, Evian also launched a brand-new aerated natural mineral water with 330ml and 750ml specifications. At present, the reference price is 300 yuan /12 bottles *750ml, which is about 25 yuan/bottle;

In early June, Yuanqi Forest also launched a new evaluation activity. However, unlike the mineral water with the price of 3 yuan, this evaluation object is the newly-launched pure water of Yuanqi Forest, with the specification of 520ml. At present, the test link has been launched in Yuanqi Forest Member Center, and 0 yuan has experienced 9.9 yuan /3 bottles.

In mid-June, Wahaha launched a brand-new upgraded drinking natural mineral water, highlighting the water source of Wulongquan in Changbai Mountain, and the price is 3 yuan/bottle. Zong Qinghou, the founder of Wahaha, mentioned at the 2023 national distributor conference that the status of water market should be "restored" in 2023, especially focusing on 3 yuan water market. Last year, Wahaha began to develop natural mineral water.

In July, the Arctic Ocean also launched a new product "natural mineral water with gas" with a specification of 330mL, which is aimed at middle and high-end consumers. JD.COM shows that the price of 330ml*12 FCL is 139 yuan, about 11.5 yuan/bottle. According to reports, the gas-bearing natural mineral water in the Arctic Ocean is obtained from natural water sources, which is rich in natural gas of carbon dioxide and various minerals such as metasilicic acid and strontium, which are beneficial to human health.

In fact, when Evergrande Ice Spring first came out, it once priced mineral water at five yuan. In the following years, its price dropped to 2 yuan /500ml. A year and a half ago, Jiaduobao’s high-end mineral water "Kunlun Mountain" took the initiative to lower its profile. The retail price of Jiaduobao Kunlun Mountain mineral water products has dropped from the previous range of 5~6 yuan to 4 yuan, and Evian has also lowered its products to the price belt of 5 yuan.

It can be seen that in recent years, the underwater exploration price of natural mineral springs has become the general trend, but whether the price reduction to the level of 2 yuan can be sustained or not is worth further observation.

In addition, it is understood that in 2021, Ipoh signed contracts with four major drinking water production bases, namely Changbai Mountain in the northeast, Wuxi in east China, Wuyishan and Heyuan in south China. Jin Mailang’s "drinking mineral spring" has two water sources: Qinglongquan in Changbai Mountain and Bishanquan in Huangshan Mountain.

Comparatively speaking, there are about 12 water sources mainly engaged in natural water and mineral water, and Baisui Mountain, which also focuses on mineral water, has 7 water sources.

For enterprises that want to play low-priced mineral water, such as Ipoh, whether they can get more water sources will also be the key to their future development.

Will the mineral water market start a comprehensive price reduction war in the future? On the one hand, lowering prices means that enterprises have to deal with the risk of product profits being compressed. On the other hand, whether consumers can form a more stable consumption mentality is also the key to whether the mineral water market can break through. This bottled water war has just begun.

(This article is the first titanium media APP, written by Liu Dafang, edited by Fang Yu)


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