As we emerge from the pandemic, health and wellness has become more widely recognised in the mainstream, encouraging consumers to be more proactive and purposeful with their food and beverage choices.
Growing awareness about health generally has risen – and with it alcohol’s effects on the quality of life has spurred mindful drinking in recent years, prompting consumers to cut back on alcohol consumption and replace it with drinks that do more for their overall health and wellness.
In response to these trends, Givaudan has unveiled its latest research on mindful drinking, offering manufacturers critical insights that consumers are looking for more appealing experience in alcohol-free beverages.
Beverage manufacturers can deliver on the growing demand for zero-proof and functional beverages, and bring a variety of options to market.
According to the research, 60% of alcohol drinkers in Europe are reducing their consumption while seeking great tasting low- and no-alcohol alternatives to enjoy during a wide range of occasions.
The key drivers behind this “mindful drinking” trend include improving general well-being (38%), saving money (33%) and improving physical fitness (31%). Eight are based on longevity or feeling good of the top 10 motivations for choosing low- and no-alcohol drinks.
The outlook for low- and no-alcohol beverages is great, with sales projections, and feedback from consumers and retailers being overwhelmingly positive.
The health-and-wellness market also is ripe for smaller brands investing in low- or no-alcohol beverages mimicking the flavour profiles of spirits, with some even dabbling with infusions to induce relaxation without alcohol.
What is also needed is the education of consumers. Industry can be pivotal in growing this category by helping them navigate available choices across portfolios as consumers learn how they can consume lower levels of alcohol to suit their tastes and adapted preferences.
According to Givaudan, there are three main moments when consumers are seeking low- and no-alcohol drinks:
- low-key moments of the day, often at home, like reading outdoors or taking a bath
- moments of casual conversation, often over food, like a dinner party
- upbeat times shared with others, for example, a night out with friends.
Mindful drinking is a very interesting development. At its core, is consumer choice for great tasting beverages, which fit in with their lives.
Drinks makers have a tremendous opportunity to create new concepts and innovate via new tastes and ingredients, as well as provide consumers with the perfect beverage and feel-good experience.
Givaudan’s research highlights the main drivers behind the consumer shift in alcohol consumption and insights into different consumer profiles and the special moments in their lives where they are seeking low-and no-alcohol drinks.
As such, and with the outlook for projected growth looking bright, brands and retailers paying attention to trending demands for low-/no-alcohol and functional beverages, and investing in the innovation to meet those demands, will maintain a strong foothold in the beverage market for 2021 and beyond.
- Rodney Jack, editor, Food & Drink Technology.
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