With consumers becoming increasingly concerned about health and wellness, alcohol consumption is on the decline. In the UK, the proportion of adults who said they drink alcohol is at its lowest level since 2005, according to figures from the Office for National Statistics.
Britvic, a large supplier of still and carbonated still and soft drinks, says there is therefore an opportunity to stock a ‘dynamic range of soft drinks’ as consumers turn to the category instead: not just at Christmas but also throughout the year.
21% of consumers want more premium soft drinks
A survey for Britvic, conducted by Censuswide UK, reveals that 21% of consumers plan to drink less alcohol, while 45% are set to buy more soft drinks at Christmas.
It adds that 37% of consumers are planning to spend more on soft drinks at Christmas than in previous years – with this figure rising to 56% in consumers aged 16-24 years old.
In fact, 39% of consumers now drink less alcohol all year round, increasing to 41% in those aged 25-34 years old and 46% in those aged over 55.
Russell Goldman, Commercial Director, Licensed and Foodservice at Britvic, commented: “It’s clear from our research that there’s going to be a real shift towards moderate drinking this Christmas and as a result, there is likely to be a high demand for soft drinks throughout the season.”
The survey also suggested that 21% of consumers don’t think there are enough premium soft drinks to choose from: increasing to 27% among those aged 25-34 years old. Britvic suggests this leaves a ‘major gap in the market’ that operators can fill with premium ranges.
Britvic's pick for Christmas sparkle
J2O Spritz – sparkling soft drink
Teisseire – syrup for coffee, cocktails and soft drinks
Indian Tonic Water – revamped in 2016 with new bespoke bottle
Soft drinks and mixers
Meanwhile, for the substantial number of consumers still planning to celebrate with alcohol this Christmas, more than half will choose spirits, according to Britvic’s survey.
“With over three in five (63%) of spirits drinkers using mixers, ensuring the bar is fully stocked with an enticing and great tasting selection ideal for mixing, like Britvic’s range of mixers and juices, will be key to capitalizing on this seasonal sales opportunity.
"As interest in premium spirits continues to rise, offering the right mixer to perfectly complement and balance the flavor is now just as important as the spirit.”
Britvic is using its ‘Pour More Flavour’ website to help consumers explore new and classic cocktail ideas.