FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- The maker of LaCroix Sparkling Water is promising "revolutionary" changes to how bottled water is sold with the introduction of a "shelf demographics" concept that it says will change "sparkling-water protocols."
Nick Caporella, chairman and CEO of National Beverage Corp., said Dec. 7 while announcing the company's earnings that it plans to "organize the shelf set to cater to the changing ethnic preferences of the local population."
"These consumers will certainly love this new shelf set created especially for them," Caporella said. "With the increasing shelf presence of both LaCroix and our Shasta Sparkling Water SDA (soft drink alternative), we are in a unique position to convert multiple generations to lifelong consumers of our healthy-hydration beverages."
Sparkling bottled water has been one of the bright spots in beverage sales in convenience stores and beyond, a trend arguably created by LaCroix. The subcategory saw volume sales grow 5.5% in c-stores during the 52-week period ending Nov. 5, according to IRI, a Chicago-based market research firm.
While LaCroix is one of the three best-selling sparkling water brands in all channels, behind private label and Sparkling Ice, according to Statista.com, it ranks only 18th in c-stores, according to IRI. During 2017, c-store sales of LaCroix are up 70%, suggesting additional room for the brand to grow in c-stores.
Without further explanation of Caporella's "revolutionary" shelf-demographics strategy, it's impossible to say if or how it will extend to c-stores. National Beverage Corp. is based in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.