Craft gin brand saturation looms in UK

The craft and high-end gin segment in the UK is at risk of a “shake-out” in the coming years, Pernod Ricard executive Jonny Peacock has told GlobalData, with the boom set to continue for around two more years.

The UK has been a major driver of gin’s resurgence in recent years, with the category’s high profile among consumers, combined with brand acquisitions, encouraging more entrepreneurial start-ups to enter the craft gin arena. Pernod has responded to the reinvigorated segment through its stake purchase of German craft gin brand Monkey 47 in 2016, and adding Malfy to its gin portfolio earlier this year.

Speaking at the Spirits Strategies & Innovation Congress in London, the groups’ UK customer development, strategy and planning director forecast that the high proliferation of premium-positioned gin brands in the country will not be sustainable in the medium-to-long-term.

Peacock added: “With so many new entrants recently, I can see a shake-out coming in craft gin. The category has to organise itself, otherwise it’s just going to be a race to the bottom.

“The barriers to entry in gin are low. The problem is, the barriers to exit are equally low.”

When asked what advice he could give to those brands hoping to ride out the potential reduction of craft gin stock keeping units (SKUs), Peacock said: “You should consistently highlight your unique selling point (USP). Also, promote the substance of your brand.”

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