Moderation was a hot topic throughout this year’s Alcohol Trends & Innovation Conference that led to a lot of heated discussion. The GM of Seedlip talked about being the first premium non-alcoholic spirit, priced at £24-26 per bottle, which has really been a game-changer in the category. There is an expectation that this will lead to lots of further innovation in this space as consumers seek premium non-alcoholic experiences. There is also an opportunity for cheaper alternatives that cater for consumers who want to cut back on alcohol as part of their lifestyle, especially mid-week, or simply not wanting to drink.

Heineken 0.0% beer has been a great success across the globe and, according to Kantar, is in the top 10 innovations in the UK in terms of delivering incremental category sales. There is a significant number of other well-known brands providing low and no beers, such as Budweiser Prohibition Brew, as well as new kids on the block such as Big Drop – who are dedicated to brewing exclusively 0.5% ABV beer. This is seen as especially important for on-trade where there is limited choice beyond Coca-Cola if you don’t want to drink alcohol.

However, there did seem to be a genuine gap in the market: great tasting non-alcoholic wines. Whilst no one has cracked this just yet, moderation is certainly proving to be much more than just a fad. The potential is ripe: expect bigger and better innovations in this space to be just around the corner.

BY ENGINEER Steve Reeves

steve.reeves@thevalueengineers.com