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Market Data 10.02.2020

UK non-alcoholic spirits market worth £37m in 2019 is forecast to more than double over the next five years

The UK non-alcoholic spirits category has grown to be worth £37m in 2019, up 506 % versus 2014, and is forecast to more than double in size again over the next five years, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

UK non-alcoholic spirits market worth £37m in 2019 is forecast to more than double over the next five years
(Photo: GlobalData)

The UK non-alcoholic spirits category has grown to be worth £37m in 2019, up 506 % versus 2014, and is forecast to more than double in size again over the next five years, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

David Harris, Consumer Analyst at GlobalData, says: “Younger generations are drinking less, with Gen-Z only strengthening this trend as they reach legal drinking age. This is hardly ground-breaking news. Adult soft drinks, premium juices and a growing range of high-quality non-alcoholic beers are all targeted at this demographic, in addition to older consumers who simply want to moderate their alcohol consumption.”

So what about consumers who don’t want a non-alcoholic beer, but still want an ‘alcohol-alike’ beverage? This may be at a party, on a night out, or at home when everyone else is enjoying their gin and tonics. This is the specific opportunity non-alcoholic spirits are targeting. Where craft beers targeted consumers turned off by mainstream German and US lager brands, non-alcoholic spirits aim to engage consumers who want to feel part of the party, but who don’t want a sore head in the morning.

Harris adds: “Talking of craft beer, what is notable is how the rise of non-alcoholic spirits mirrors the rise of craft beer, arguably the beverage trend of the last decade. With laser targeting of a specific need, from a specific demographic, there are clear similarities between non-alcoholic spirits and craft beer.

“Both target younger legal age consumers. Both target consumers who are either tired of, or have no interest in, the mainstream variant of the offering, and both use flashy, stylized and no-nonsense packaging to engage with their audience.”

Excited with the prospect, major players in spirits are increasingly looking to get involved, with William Grant and Sons launching their Atopia range, Pernod-Ricard launching Celtic Soul, as well as the Diageo-funded Seedlip, which has now expanded out of the UK and into overseas markets.

Retailers also seem to agree that this is a category to watch too, with Tesco, Lidl, Asda, and more major UK retailers all stocking at least one non-alcoholic spirit.

Harris concludes: “While this may not be the next craft beer, the opportunity is certainly there, and both brands and retailers agree that this in an opportunity which is too big to miss.

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