Non-alcoholic drinks: new product launches to raise demand 

By Shreeras Shetty, content writer

Non-alcoholic drinks are gaining huge momentum, significantly contributing to the non-alcoholic revolution across the globe. They usually refer to the beverages that contain less than 0.5% of alcohol content by volume, and typically include an extensive range of beverages including fruit juices, bottled water, energy drinks, soft drinks, coffee and tea, and probiotics. The beverage industry in general has undergone an impeccable transformation in consumer preference over the past couple of years, oweing to the persistent introduction of new beverages by the prominent players of the market. Waitrose & Partners, a popular British supermarkets company, noted in its Food and Drink Report 2021 that searches for non-alcoholic drinks is expeditiously growing at 22% year on year.

One of the major reasons for the revolutionary growth in demand for non-alcoholic drinks is that consumers these days are increasingly concerned about maintaining their physical fitness, therefore switching to healthier alternatives. Bacardi, one of the biggest family-owned spirits companies in the world, pointed out the non-alcoholic drinks section as the one of the most demanding divisions in the market in its 2021 Cocktail Trends Report.

In addition, consumers are more informed about the new launches than ever before from meticulous promotions and advertising incorporated by the leading players on social media. Moreover, interminable product launches with uniquely intriguing flavours along with innovative packaging by companies are further expected to increase the demand for non-alcoholic drinks in the coming years. Thus, consumers will be inspired by the taste of high-quality non-alcoholic beverages. According to the report published by Allied Market Research, the global non-alcoholic drinks market is expected to reach $2,134.6 billion by 2031, registering a CAGR of 6.8% from 2022 to 2031.

Numerous players of the market across the globe are incessantly launching new products to cater the immense non-alcohol drinkers across the globe. WhistlePig, a Vermont-based eminent whiskey brand, launched a product called WhistlePig PiggyBack Devil’s Slide. It has less than one proof or 0.5% alcohol by volume (ABV). It is aged for six years before being “undistilled” at the manufacturing facility of WhistlePig.

The product is found to be distinctively potable, withstanding its original, striking flavour. The company WhistlePig considers this product to be ideal for breakfast among the consumers. The company has also mentioned that 100% of the proceeds of this 100% Rye Aged non-alcoholic whiskey, PiggyBack Devil’s Slide, will benefit the bartending community across the nation.  

The trend of introducing innovative non-alcoholic drinks continues to gain remarkable momentum in the beverage industry among consumers. HUNWines, the UK-based creative beverage company, launched a non-alcoholic canned wine in the UK called HUN Alcohol Free (AF). This new beverage is a sparkling South African Chenin Blanc, and hence vegan-friendly. It is the first canned non-alcoholic wine in the UK, and has a ABV of 0.5%.

Mark Wollard, co-founder of HUNWines, stated that they have worked in close proximity with the producer of the flavour so as to ensure 100% retention of indigenous aromas and flavour of the wine during the de-alcoholisation process. Thus, HUN AF comes out as a perfect beverage for the modern-day Millennial drinker, correlating with numerous people limiting their alcohol consumption.

Despite of all the rigorous product launches by various companies, the outbreak of COVID-19 and the prevalence of lockdowns in various countries across the globe has had a negative impact on the growth of the global non-alcoholic drink market. Lockdowns led to the closure of various manufacturing units around the globe, including those of the beverage industry. In addition, the sales and distribution of non-alcoholic drinks fell due to cancellation of various international sports events across the globe in order to curb the spread of the virus during the pandemic. Moreover, several import and export restrictions were imposed by the governments so as to limit the spread of the virus. This made it difficult for the beverage companies to acquire all the necessary ingredients and raw materials to make their diverse range of non-alcoholic drinks.

However, there has been a significant surge in the number of liver failure cases among people across the globe, especially during the pandemic. Thus, people across the globe increasingly tend to switch to non-alcoholic drink as it gives the exact same taste as the alcoholic drinks. Moreover, they are organic, lower in calorie, but significantly defer in the alcohol content. In addition, growing prevalence of premium juices, crafted soda, probiotics, and others significantly help in detoxification, weight loss, improving digestion, and providing vitamins and other nutritious supplements that are essential for the body. These factors are expected to increase the demand for non-alcoholic drinks exponentially in the coming years.