IWSR Research: Who is winning in the moderation trend?

According to IWSR research conducted in late 2023 across the top 10 no/low markets – Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, South Africa, Spain, the UK and the US – 44% of no/low consumers said they had switched to a no-alcohol drink from another non-alcoholic drink, such as soft drinks, water, tea or coffee. This compares to 29% who replaced a full-strength alcohol product – although this was significantly up on the 2022 figure.

“No-alcohol drinkers generally come from other non-alcoholic beverages, but also now increasingly from full-strength categories,” says Susie Goldspink, Head of No- and Low-Alcohol Insights, IWSR. “There is also an increase in the proportion of no-alcohol consumers planning to increase their no-alcohol consumption.

“Increasingly, alcohol companies see no-alcohol especially as an opportunity for growth. Moderation is an established trend, and no-alcohol products which keep customers within a category – for example, switching beer for no-alcohol beer – or within a brand portfolio – say, switching Heineken for Heineken 0.0 – offer an option to alcohol businesses to hold on to revenue and continue to build brand equity.”

As a result, a number of brand owners across the beverage alcohol marketplace have invested heavily behind zero-alcohol versions of leading brands, or have either acquired or developed ‘pure-play’ no-alcohol brands, to target these opportunities. IWSR’s Innovation Tracker shows that the number of no-alcohol innovations coming to market globally has more than tripled since 2019, with numbers peaking in 2020 for launches of brand extensions as well as new-to-world products.
Consumer attitudes, however, are somewhat different within low-alcohol: here, 40% of those surveyed said they had replaced a full-strength alternative with a low-alcohol product, with 33% switching from another non-alcoholic drink.

“Full-strength alcohol categories continue to be replaced the most by low-alcohol beverages – particularly replacing beer/cider, for example in Spain and Brazil,” explains Goldspink.

“Meanwhile, spirits are being replaced more in markets such as the US and South Africa, where spirits are the most purchased full-strength category.”

IWSR consumer research also suggests that people who don’t currently participate in the no-/low-alcohol category could also be potential targets for brand owners in the future.

“More than half of non-consumers of no/low are either moderating their alcohol intake (26%) or don’t drink alcohol at all (28%) – offering a further untapped opportunity for producers of no- and low-alcohol brands,” explains Goldspink.

“There is also evidence from our recent consumer research that in many markets, no-alcohol products recruit consumers who aren’t drinking in a certain occasion or switching between both. These might be ‘Substituters’ (those who switch between alcohol and no-alcohol in different occasions) or ‘Blenders’ (mixing alcohol and no-alcohol in the same occasion).

“In both cases, these occasions offer an incremental opportunity for a brand owner to sell a product to a consumer who otherwise would not have been buying one of their products.”

Meanwhile, the emergent segment of functional beverages – ‘alcohol adjacents’ with active ingredients such as CBD, adaptogens or nootropics that claim to offer health benefits, stress reduction, mood alteration and pleasure – is beginning to attract younger consumers (Gen Z, Millennials) in particular.

According to IWSR data, the purchase of cognitive enhancers has increased over the past year, driven by growth in Australia and the US – where up to 29% of Millennials have made purchases in the category.

“CBD and other nootropic/adaptogenic products could provide a future challenge to alcohol consumption, particularly with younger legal drinking age consumers who are more likely to participate in this category,” says Goldspink.

“This generation participates in a broader repertoire of beverages in this space, as well as generally still consuming alcohol. As such, for brand owners looking to shape their future category, it’s really all about offering consumer choice to suit different occasions.”

The growth of the overall no/low-alcohol category gives brands the opportunity to cater to a much wider group of consumers. In many ways, no/low can be thought of as a solution to a gap in the market, rather than as a threat to the incumbents.

Source:IWSR

Scientists prove that drinking good wine will make you happier

Scientists prove that drinking good wine will make you happier, with the effect being further enhanced if you listened to jazz.

The National Researcg Council of Italy study reported March 5th, 2024 (in the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture) can good wine impact the “pleasantness” of an experience.

A trial was undertaken at the 2022 edition of the Internet Festival in Pisa, Italy, where a social experiment with a reliable methodology, through wearable sensors, measured the emotions aroused in a live context on consumers by different kinds of wines.

Five wines were trialed, two of which the scientists described as “faulty” and three which were high-quality samples, on 50 consumers in an “arousing context” with live jazz music in the background.

Both explicit results through questionnaires and implicit results through electrocardiogram (ECG) recorded by the wearable sensors were recorded.

According to the research findings, study author Dr Lucia Billeci, of the National Research Council of Italy said wine “undoubtedly generates a significant emotional response on consumers” and that an answer is “multifaceted and attributable to the quality level of the wine tasted”.
The findings also state: “In fact, all things being equal, while drinking wine even untrained consumers can perfectly recognise good wines compared to products of lower quality.” and “High-quality wines are able to induce a spectrum of positive emotions, as observed by the analysis of ECG signals, especially when they are coupled with background music.”

In conclusion, the scientists reported that the framework, “certainly played to the advantage of good-quality wines” and produced “positive emotional characteristics on the palate even of some less experienced consumers”.

In addition it said there was a “dragging effect” towards a positive mood, which was generated by the surrounding conditions, i.e. good music in a beautiful location.

Link to Research:
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/38441204/

Wine News: Light-to-moderate wine drinking can lower heart attack risk

A recent study published in the peer-reviewed journal BMC Medicine has found that light-to-moderate wine drinking can be beneficial to your health, including those with heart disease.

According to the study, entitled ‘Association of alcohol consumption with morbidity and mortality in patients with cardiovascular disease’, patients with heart disease who drank six grams of alcohol per day (on average) were associated with a 50 % risk reduction of heart attack, stroke, and even death.

Even those who averaged eight grams of alcohol consumption per day would see a 27% reduction in death risk compared with those who did not drink, the study found.

Vinepair states that in the United States, an average pour contains 14 grams of alcohol.

Comprising assessment of over 48,000 patients with heart disease, the research found that, while even increased alcohol consumption up to 62 grams per day was not associated with a heightened risk of heart attack, “non-drinking patients should not be encouraged to take up light drinking because of well-known adverse effects on other health outcomes, such as cancers.”

“Our findings suggest that people with CVD (cardiovascular disease) may not need to stop drinking in order to prevent additional heart attacks, strokes or angina, but that they may wish to consider lowering their weekly alcohol intake,” study co-author Chengyi Ding said, per Reuters.

She did note once again however that “Alcohol consumption is associated with an increased risk of developing other illnesses.”

Study – https://bmcmedicine.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12916-021-02040-2

 

#winenews #wine #winelovers #ww #winewednesday #winescience #instawine #winestagram #winetasting #winetime #redwine #whitewine #rosewine #wineinmoderation

Young red wine is found to be more beneficial than aged wine, study finds

A recent study of 16 wines from Australia and New Zealand has found levels of healthy antioxidants, existing mainly in red grapes, decreased significantly over time.

CQUniversity lead researcher Mani Naiker said the compound, trans-resveratrol, was proven to have cardiovascular, anti-inflammatory, and anti-diabetic effects.

“The more you consume this compound in your food or in beverages, it is perceived to give you better health benefits,” Dr Naiker said.

“When we compare younger bottled wines with mature red wines, we have proven that as the wine ages the concentration of this important bioactive compound decreases by about 75 percent over a 16-month period.

“That is a huge decrease in the concentration of this particularly important health-benefiting compound.”

Lead researcher Dr. Mani Naiker states that the compound is proven to have cardiovascular, anti-inflammatory, and anti-diabetic effects.

The study published in the Australian Journal of Grape and Wine Research, found the concentration decreased in some wines by as much as 96 percent.

After the initial resveratrol levels were measured, the bottles were resealed and stored in darkness in their original packaging.

“Irrespective to where we got the red wine from, which variety it was, the process of that compound, the loss was the same,” Dr Naiker said.

“I might just leave it with the French paradox that having a glass of red with a meal every day is good for your health.

“Now you know, you might want to go with a young red rather than an old one.”

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/ajgw.12449

Wine in a can is a robust trend and not a short-term fad

With the traditional wine market in the US growing at an increasingly slow pace, successful wineries 10 years from now will be those that have adapted to a different consumer with different values.  Wine in a can is no new thing; it was first seen in World War 1 when the French army had their wine rations delivered this way.

WICresearch.com has done an in-depth study of the drivers that are affecting the boom in the wine-in-can market and it is predicted that the trend will continue to grow as it has done exponentially in its infancy.  The most important factors to consumers when it comes to wine-in-can are taste, quality and value, followed by convenience, portability and fun.  From 2017-2108 the wine-in-can market grew by 43%.  It is a market that cannot be ignored as the industry needs new growth places.

There are 6 main drivers that are promoting the expansion of wine-in-can, as follows:

Convenience

This is the most obvious benefit and relates to the carrying, opening and finishing of the product.  One is able take a can where it is illegal or inconvenient to bring a bottle or any glass.  The single-serve size also allows for zero waste of the contents, and it removes the need for traditional wine paraphernalia: foil cutters, corks screws. Under the convenience banner, the wine vending machine is also a trend that is starting to gain traction, certainly opening new markets in terms of novelty and availability.

Occasion expansion

This is based on both location and event. Location involves places where taking a bottle of wine is not suitable nor practical: boats, beach, swimming pools.  Event expansion is where offering a single-serve beverage is desirable e.g.BBQ, picnic.

It is interesting that wine-in-can drivers such as these are not cannibalizing the existing market with its meagre growth of 1-4% but it is rather creating an extension of markets or even new markets and thus creating strong double-digit growth.

Sustainability and cost savings

Aluminum is 100% recyclable and so the environmental footprint is greatly reduced, and the product attracts an eco-friendly consumer who values sustainability.  Research has shown that 51% of Millennials check the packaging before purchase for sustainability claims.

 Facts:

  • Sustainable products grew 4x the rate of non-sustainable products (Nielsen)
  •  Consumers are willing to pay 15% more for sustainable packaging (McKinsey)
  • 66% of consumers will pay more for sustainable brands (Nielsen)

Packaging in aluminum cans also produces a saving of 15-20% with some manufacturers suggesting 40% due to efficiency of packing and transport, lack of breakage, and lighter weight.  Therefore, carbon emissions for transportation are also lower. Also, savings occur in establishments serving wine by the glass, as there is total accuracy over the serving size with no shrinkage.

Portion control and variety

Apart from the benefit of not having to open a whole bottle when you would like to enjoy a glass, there is also no issue of dealing with unfinished wine.  The wine-in-can movement is very popular with restaurants that have less waste and leftover wine, or the problem of customers wanting to cork their bottle to take it home which is illegal in many parts of the world.

Due to the small serving, wine drinkers can enjoy different varieties of wine with different courses, instead of a full bottle of the same wine.

Visual image and branding

An aluminum can has a 360-degree label rather than just a front and a back.  It gives the product a cooler, more photographable, Instagrammable look.

“With 64% of consumers trying a new [wine] product simply because the package catches their eye, packaging design is one of the most underappreciated marketing levers” (Freeman, 2016).

Designers can go so far as to make the packaging glow in the dark.

Quality

“You actually have a really stable environment in a can…There’s no UV penetration or oxygen exchange like there would be through a cork and glass bottle” (Drinks News, 2018).

For still and sparkling wine, the integrity of the product can easily be preserved.  The dark, oxygen-free environment for still wine is ideal while for sparkling, the effervescence is contained in a small space.

There is ongoing research for different types of cans, linings and filling systems to ensure further integrity of the product as well as preserving its future life which is, as yet, unproven.

It is interesting to note that the wine-in-can purchase is not affected by gender, education nor generational group.  There is also no difference in self-reported wine knowledge i.e. consumers with a high level of wine knowledge are just as likely to buy wine in cans.

In a 2019 a blind taste test of wine-in-can versus wine-in-bottle was conducted. The identical wine from the same winery in both packaging formats was poured.  There were 4 different varietals and the experiment was done in 2 different locations.  51.1% said they either preferred the wine-in-can or that they could tell no difference between the two.

Wine-in-can is a growing market and innovation and interesting marketing tools are emerging every day.  It will be a very interesting space to watch over the next decade.

WICresearch.com

Jenny Ratcliffe-Wright
Cape Wine Master