Energy drinks : Consumption and perception of young people

The term "energy drink" is a trade name that is not based on any regulatory definition. These drinks contain a mixture of different substances such as caffeine, taurine, glucuronolactone, vitamins ...

Author(s):

Virginie Chauchoy

EDHEC Business School

The term "energy drink" is a trade name that is not based on any regulatory definition. These drinks contain a mixture of different substances such as caffeine, taurine, glucuronolactone, vitamins C and B, plant extracts such as guarana and ginseng, and sweeteners. Some of these ingredients are stimulants. (Such drinks will be called BDE (Boissons Dites Energisantes in French)).
BDEs should not be confused with carbohydrate diet "sports drinks", specifically designed for sport and whose composition is regulated.
BDEs were initially prohibited in France due to an unfavorable opinion of the Superior Council of Public Hygiene France (CSHPF) in 1996. During the years that followed, the French Agency for Food Safety (AFSSA) repeatedly stressed the suspected toxicity of taurine and glucuronolactone, and the cardiovascular risks caused by the consumption of such products during sports or coupled with alcohol.
Since their marketing authorization in 2008, one hundred brands of BDEs have tried to enter the French market. However, it is still dominated by an undisputed leader, Red Bull, which has over 60% of the market share, and is followed distantly by two brands of the Coca-Cola Company: Monster and Burn. Since this market grew by 9.1% in volume and 2.8% in value in 2013 and the tax does not result in a significant increase in the selling price of cans, one may wonder whether this growth will be slowed in 2014.
In an effort to promote themselves, BDE brands exceed their limits by sponsoring high-profile extreme sports. For instance, Red Bull sponsored Austrian athlete Felix Baumgartner who jumped from space in October 2012 (Red Bull Stratos).
This communication contributes to the confusion between energy drinks and sport drinks, misleads the consumer, and in recent years, has normalized the consumption of BDEs. Although principally a festive drink, consumers, particularly the young, may be motivated by a desire to improve their athletic and mental performance, as evidenced by Red Bull's slogan: Red Bull gives you wings®.
To this end, some companies offer personalized cans of energy drinks at sporting and cultural events and others have chosen to distribute their products directly to students at parties or sporting events organized by the BDE and BDS.
One of these companies, Youth Energy Drink (YED), wishes to enter the market with its retail brand called Bomb Y (for young people and with reference to generation Y). The company asks your market research firm to examine the following question:
What are the habits of consumption and perceptions of energy drinks among young French people?

Type: Case Study
Date: le 01/10/2015

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