Emerging Businesses in Declining Industries
The consumption of distilled spirits increased across the Unites States. This could be due to both rise and fall in economy during the period, since alcoholic consumption tends to increase in both good and bad times. According to Ataman Aksoy and John Christopher Beghin, “nationwide, sales of distilled spirits increased 6. 1 percent to more than $2. 3 billion in 2002. ” The HEB grocery store chain—one of the largest grocery chain stores with over 300 outlets in Texas, Louisiana, and Mexico—reported that beer and wine topped their charts of beverage sales where over 33 percent of all beverages sold was beer and wine.
They claimed that “soft drinks were the second-most popular beverage, making up 28 percent of sales. Milk made up 21 percent, juices 14 percent, bottled water 3 percent and sports drinks 2 percent. ” And coffee, well it was somewhere down the line! There was also a big increase in the sale of soft drinks from the year 1970. This factor could be largely attributed to the eating habits of people. Fast-food or quick-eats have become very popular over the period of time both due to the non-availability of time and the convenience factors.
Soft drinks go well with these types of salty snack foods and so almost every fast-food eatery started having a counter selling soft drinks. Aksoy and Beghin report that “In 1970, the annual per capita of soft drinks in the United States was 86 liters; in 1999 it exceeded 200 liters according to the U. S. Department of Agriculture. ” Consumption of bottled water was on the increase among people, and the sale of bottled water continued to shoot up the charts. A survey undertaken by Beverage Marketing Corp. , a New York-based organization, sale of bottled water continued to rise in the past decade.
For example, in the year 2001 about $6. 5 billion worth of water was sold and this figure was a rise of 11 percent when compared to the previous year sales. There was an increasing awareness about maintaining good health, and this could be the reason for this sale. Another factor that points to increasing consciousness among people about maintaining good health was the increasing sale of fresh juices. On an average, juice consumption increases by two to three percent in the United States every year. Sale of sports drinks, soy drinks, milk substitutes, and other health beverages continued to rise since the 1970s.
The Capps’ report states that “Americans are drinking more reduced-fat and skim milk than whole milk. ” This desire for looking out for health and nutritional values in food consumption wrote the fate of the beverage industry in the following years. The decline in coffee consumption can be attributed to the concern about the caffeine content in coffee. It is reported that about 75% of caffeine consumed in the United States is through coffee. Several medical studies on the benefits and bad effects of coffee in the health of men, women, the old, the young, and on various other groups of people have been done in the last thirty years.
Coffee is universally accepted as a stimulant that enlivens a person mentally. However, studies on its long-term effects are often varied in their findings. Susan Aldridge reports that “Too much coffee may have an adverse effect, but it appears that, whatever its mechanism, moderate consumption may slow down cognitive decline. ” Another study reported in the journal, Neurology, reports that “Drinking more than three cups of coffee a day may decrease a woman’s rate of cognitive decline associated with age, but offers no such benefits for men.
” Such reports influenced the decisions that people made on their choice of beverage. Many of the reports that linked various health problems to coffee have been ambiguous and unconvincing. There hasn’t been any definite report to prove that coffee drinkers are more prone to heart diseases, cholesterol, high blood pressure, or any other harmful effects. The decline in coffee consumption merely indicates the anxiety that such reports induced on the consumers. Another factor that proves this point is the increase in sale of specialty coffee that had lower levels of caffeine.
Positive messages influence positively and negative messages have a negative impact on the consumers. Here’s a chart that details the opinions of coffee consumers: Source: National Coffee Drinking Trends Study It can also be argued that caffeine exposure doesn’t just come through coffee. Iced-beverages, cocoa-based drinks, soda, and other chocolate-based foods are rich in caffeine content. To back this theory, another reason reported by Lucio Cassia, Michael Fattore, & Stefano Paleari will be effective. Cassia, Fattore, and Paleari blame the quality of coffee produced during the period for the decline in consumption.
They say that one of the reasons for decline in coffee consumption in the United States “at least before the 1980s, was the progressive worsening of average coffee quality, obtained at the time as mixtures of different varieties, called ‘blends. ’” Competition between different coffee toasters such as General Foods’ Maxwell House and Procter & Gamble’s Folgers and Nestle drastically increased in the USA since the mid-1950s. Their focus was mainly on price, and they were forced to reduce cost “thus continually introducing more of the cheaper ‘robust’ quality into the mixture.
The final products were definitely less expensive with a bitter and less savory taste. ” They had to maintain constant stock to meet demands. In such a scenario, attention to freshness was put on the backburner, and large-scale production and distribution were given priority. Not every brand that was sold in the market could claim to be the finest coffee. Coffee quality deteriorated with the increasing churning out of instant coffees and other cheap varieties. Many small companies morphed into international companies claiming to make coffee from the best beans in the world.
Such false claims and the decline in the quality of coffee were definitely other factors that kept away coffee lovers from their cups. With a decline in quality, coffee consumption became less attractive, as consumers had other options such as soft drinks and other ready-to-drink beverages readily available to them to experiment with and to get accustomed to. Conclusion To keep up with competition and to keep up the habit of coffee consumption, different types of coffee such as latte, espresso, mocha, cappuccino, and other flavored varieties have emerged. These, however, never led to an overall increase in the consumption levels.
The reason for this can be that the person who tastes one of these varieties is not tempted to go back to it on a regular basis. Flavored coffees, on the hand, can boost consumption levels. For example, a person who tastes one flavor and enjoys it, might experiment with another flavor. They might then go on to try different roasts and may be finally led to consuming regular coffee. Regular coffee is now available in many different forms—we get specialty blends, double-roasted varieties, and others. Due to the changing lifestyles, coffee also seems to be consumed away from home.
This has increased the demand for specialty coffee. Coffee shops offering a variety have kept up consumer interest and coffee consumption levels have been shooting up in recent times. ?
1. M. Ataman Aksoy & John Christopher Beghin, Global Agricultural Trade and Developing Countries, World Bank Publications, 2005, ISBN 0821358634, 9780821358634, http://books. google. com/books? id=Fm3bqFbXIEIC 2. Judy Putnam & Shirley Gerrior, Trends in the U. S. Food Supply 1970-97, http://www. ers. usda. gov/publications/aib750/aib750g. pdf 3. http://www. econ. iastate. edu/classes/econ496/lence/spring2004/coffee.
pdf 4. Susan Aldridge, Moderate Coffee Consumption is Linked to Lower Level of Cognitive Decline, European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 61: 226-32, February 2007. 5. K. Ritchie, I. Carriere, A. de Mendona, F. Portet, J. F. Dartigues, O. Rouaud, P. Barberger-Gateau, & M. L. Ancelin, The neuroprotective effects of caffeine – A prospective population study (the Three City Study), Neurology, 69: 536-45, 7 August 2007. 6. Lucio Cassia, Michael Fattore, & Stefano Paleari, Entrepreneurial Strategy: Emerging Businesses in Declining Industries, Edward Elgar Publishing, ISBN 1845421973, 9781845421977, 2006.