PROOF’s Moderating Consumer Report; Poor weather dampens on-trade; Takeaway pints continue
Waitrose expands no/low range as moderation ramps up
Waitrose has partnered with Diageo to highlight the supermarket’s 70-SKU no-low offering. The partnership will see 60% more space dedicated to no/low in time for the December peak in sales and comes off the back of Waitrose reporting 20% growth in no/low sales in the past year.
PROOF’s Intelligence Report – The Moderating Consumer – revealed that 19.1 million UK adults are permanently moderating or avoiding alcohol, with 51% planning to further moderate their alcohol intake in the future. Despite the growth in moderation, no/low remains small – only 5% of moderating consumers (the main target audience) regularly drink alcohol-free spirits and 9% regularly drink alcohol-free beer. Furthermore, no/low beer currently makes up around 2% of beer volume in the UK off-trade and already accounts for more than 2% of beer shelf space.
Drinking soft drinks (31%) and simply drinking fewer drinks (27%) proved to be more popular moderation techniques than drinking no/low, so there is some risk behind dedicating even more shelf space to the category. However, the off-trade is the best place for it, with 49% of consumers looking to supermarkets and shops for new drink inspiration, compared to 25% in pubs and bars. Furthermore, Diageo’s portfolio of no/low versions of well-known brands will help, as consumers are more likely to purchase recognised brands.
Sources: PROOF Intelligence – The Moderating Consumer, Drinks Business
July weather dampens the on-trade, but benefits English wine
Weekly sales in managed venues in the week to Saturday 5th August were down 6% compared to last year. This includes a fall of 16% on Sunday at the end of the wettest July on record, whereas 2022 saw weather of high 20s Celsius. Cider and spirits saw the biggest declines of 15% and 11% respectively, whilst wine saw a 1% increase in sales. This isn’t the only good news for wine, English growers are expecting record yields after a dry June and wet July.
Sources: The Drinks Business, The Morning Advertiser
Pubs allowed to sell takeaway pints, but new duty rules provide a barrier
Lockdown rules allowing pubs to sell takeaway drinks were set to expire, meaning venues would have to apply for permission from their local council. Despite a consultation receiving just 174 responses, Rishi Sunak personally stepped in to allow the regulation to continue. Bodies including NTIA, UKHospitality and CAMRA support the decision, although new tax rules may prove a barrier to takeaway sales of draught beer and cider, as these would need to be purchased separately at a higher rate of duty than those sold to be drunk on-trade.
Sources: Morning Advertiser, Sky News
Strange brews & news
Roast Dinner Brown Ale… how far can craft beer go?
Northern Monk have further pushed the boundaries of bizarre craft beers with their collaboration with Aunt Bessie’s. The two Northern companies have produced a series of four beers based on traditional British cuisine – including a Roast Dinner Brown Ale, Jam Roly Poly Pale, Apple Crumble Pale and Sticky Toffee Pud Porter. Consumers will be able to find the bizarre creations in Morrisons from Wednesday.
Investments, acquisition and openings
Sources: Propel, Spirits Business
Product launches and campaigns
Sources: Morning Advertiser, The Spirits Business, Propel