Can craft sodas add fizz to slumping beverage industry?

The soda business is desperate to get out of their sales slump, and boutique beverages could be the answer, reports CBS News correspondent Vinita Nair.

For the 10th straight year, soda consumption is down. Americans drank nearly 1.5 billion fewer cases last year than in 2004, when soda sales had hit an all-time high.

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Now, carbonated water and unflavored seltzer sales are booming, as people turn away from both high-calorie sugary and chemically-sweetened diet sodas. That's proof Americans still like a little fizz in their drinks.

The Appalachian Brewing Company in central Pennsylvania is churning out four different types of craft soda.

"We have a root beer, a diet root beer, a white birch beer and a ginger beer," said director of marketing Mike Parker.

He said "craft soda" means smaller batches made from higher-quality ingredients with more attention to detail.

But it doesn't necessarily mean less sugar.

"I think one of the definitions of craft would be as natural as you can get," said Parker, whose beverages feature natural sweeteners, like cane sugar. "If we don't use sugar, we use the natural sugar substitute, stevia, which is a plant. Higher quality, less processed."

Less processed, but more profits -- at least that's the hope.

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The makers of craft soda hopes to follow the path of craft beer, which today accounts for nearly 20 percent of total beer sales in the United States. That amounts to more than $19.5 billion.

So naturally craft soda has gotten the attention of the big boys -- PepsiCo, in particular.

"We think there's a good healthy prospect of where craft could go in the soda world going forward," PepsiCO North America CMO Simon Lowden said.

Last September, the soft drink giant launched the limited release Caleb's Kola, it is sold only in glass bottles, with sugar instead of high fructose corn syrup.

They've also created a craft version of Mountain Dew, its neon-green color noticeably missing, called Dewshine.

And later this summer, Pepsi is releasing a series of craft sodas called Stubborn with flavors like agave vanilla cream and black cherry with tarragon. They will only be available from soda fountains in select restaurants.

"Flavor is everything, everywhere -- the sky's the limit in terms of choices," PepsiCo's Lowden said. "The one thing that's not a choice, though, is taste. And consumers demand, more than ever, great-tasting products."

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For all of their throwback charm and simpler ingredients, are craft sodas any better for you than the bigger, mass-produced brands? Not according to nutritionist Marion Nestle.

"Because so many people want healthier foods and healthier ingredients and less sugar, the companies are trying to find products that will appeal to a more health-conscious consumer," Nestle said. "I would advise anybody who's drinking these products to read the labels carefully. So you have to think of sodas -- craft or not -- as liquid candy."

And there's the issue of price: The cost of ingredients and packaging adds up, and that can make craft soda more expensive.

"It's always going to be a little bit higher price for a more premium product," Parker said.