Nationwide, bottled water sales have increased by as much as 30 percent. Even so, there are more than 40 brands on the shelf-diluting profits in an already saturated market.
Analysts are speculating that consumers may be reaching for a bottle of water instead of more profitable bottled soft drinks. The profits may be further drained away as competition for market share finds industry leaders cutting prices. Perrier and Danone, which have long dominated the market, are being challenged by soft drink leaders Coke and Pepsi.
Annual consumption by U.S. citizens of bottled water is estimated at 20 gallons per person.