Sales of non-alcoholic beer in the US have shot up by 32 percent, radically outstripping the growth of real booze, new data shows.
Mounting health and wellness concerns have helped fuel the spike in non-alcoholic beers, with younger drinkers more likely to opt for a zero-percent beverage, researchers said.
The figures from NielsenIQ found that sales of alcoholic beers, seltzers, cider and fermented beverages only grew by 3 percent in the year to September 9th.
By comparison, the alcohol-free beer market has averaged 31 percent annual growth in the last four years.
Heineken, Budweiser, Corona and Guinness are among the best-known beer brands to have launched their own alcohol-free versions in recent years.
Sales of non-alcoholic beer in the US have shot up by 32 percent, radically outstripping the growth of real booze, new data shows
Kaleigh Theriault, managing director of beverage alcohol thought leadership at NielsenIQ, told the Wall Street Journal: ‘Some suppliers have gotten smart and said hey, somebody wants to feel like they are still part of the drinking occasion with a non-alcohol beer, a non-alcohol wine or even a non-alcohol cocktail.
‘Those products really allow for that.’
She also told the outlet that many young people now came of drinking age during the pandemic – restricting their opportunities to experiment with alcohol.
The trend is not necessarily being fueled tee-totalers but rather drinkers who occasionally wish to moderate their alcohol consumption, the data showed.
It comes after major efforts by brewing brands to make non-alcoholic drinks more trendy.
When Heineken launched its 0.0 beer in the US in 2019, its emphasis was on making ‘non-alcoholic beer look cool,’ according to managing director of investor relations Federico Castillo Martinez.
The company launched a ‘Now You Can’ advertising campaign which showed people drinking the beverage in everyday circumstances such as driving a car or making work presentations.
it is now the top-selling non-alcoholic beer, having cornered around 20 percent of the market, according to the company.
Brands have also improved their manufacturing processes to make zero percent beers taste more like their boozy alternatives.
When Heineken launched its 0.0 beer in the US in 2019, its emphasis was on making ‘non-alcoholic beer look cool,’ according to managing director of investor relations Federico Castillo Martinez
Alcohol-free beer is produced by two methods: first by stopping short the fermentation process before it produces alcohol or by draining out the alcohol afterwards. Methods vary between brewing giants.
Executives at AB InBev told the WSJ that an estimated 60 percent of non-alcoholic beer sales represented new growth in the market rather than replacing existing sales.
Despite the surge, the US is lagging behind Europe in sales. Non-alcoholic beer sales in Western Europe represent 5.8 percent of total beer sales by volume, according to figures from Euromonitor reported in the WSJ. But in America this figure stands at 0.9 percent.
However sales of booze are declining across the board. Figures from consultancy firm Gallup show only 62 percent of Americans aged between 18-34 described themselves as drinkers rather than abstainers between 2021 and 2023. A decade earlier, this figure was 72 percent.
Source: | This article originally belongs to Dailymail.co.uk
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