No- and low-alcohol wine in the US

The numbers, say analysts, are there for anyone who wants to read them. US consumers are drinking less and are looking for lower-alcohol products. Jeff Siegel reports.

Low- and no-alcohol wines are growing in popularity
Low- and no-alcohol wines are growing in popularity

British drinks consultancy IWSR released two studies over the past year: in its 2019 overview, the group found that one-third of 21- to 24-year-olds and 35- to 44-year-olds say they consume low- or no-alcoholic drinks two or three times a week. And it found, after studying 2018 alcohol consumption, that “low- and no-alcohol brands are showing significant growth in key markets as consumers increasingly seek better-for-you products, and explore ways to reduce their alcohol intake”. Growth of no-alcohol wine is forecast at 13.5%, with low-alcohol wine at 5.6%.

Meanwhile, a proprietary 2019 study by US industry association the Wine Market Council found that younger wine drinkers who cut wine consumption did so because they were drinking less alcohol overall, going from weekly wine drinking to monthly.

This is not an especially surprising trend to Europeans, who have been grappling with it for a couple of years. In fact, an official from Diageo, one of the biggest alcohol companies in the world (whose brands include Smirnoff, Tanqueray and Captain Morgan) predicted last autumn that low- and no-alcohol alternatives would continue to grow, calling it the number one trend in the booze business.

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