Big Cat agency has specialised in marketing communications for hospitality businesses since it was established 16 years ago and has become somewhat of an expert in the field. Our expert knowledge has allowed us to keep on top of the consistently changing trends of the market, so I thought I’d share some of the top 6 drinks trends to look out for this spring!
Millennials are having a big impact on every trend at the moment including eating habits and environmental impacts and they are also impacting the drinks industry. With younger people now focussing on their health and wellbeing, they are reducing their alcohol consumption and instead opting for a post gym protein shake. In fact, some millennials even go as far as cutting alcohol out completely, with 29% of 16 to 24-year-olds in 2015 admitting to being tea-total (rising from 18% in 2005).
It is not only the increase in millennials cutting out alcohol completely, it has been noticed that younger generations are becoming less likely to drink harmful amounts and not taking part in binge drinking. With this in mind, many drink companies are having to launch alcohol-free products to keep up with increasing demand. It isn’t only beer and wine companies that are jumping on the band wagon, alcohol-free spirits are now a thing.
Widely in line with the trend of less alcohol being consumed, healthification is a movement which has seen a reduction in the consumption of fizzy drinks and the rise of fruit and vegetable based shots, providing a quick dose of goodness to boost the wellbeing of concerned consumers. Increasing concerns around wellness has resulted in consumers demanding more transparency in what goes into products and evidence of authenticity, which has caused a trend of more natural ingredients and flavourings being used.
CBD infused drinks
CBD is already regularly used in most consumer products, from skincare to coffee and cocktails, and since being legalised in the UK, it is only growing in popularity. Consumers are crediting CBD for relief from anxiety and pain and this has increased the demand for more day-to-day products with the ingredient.
Mental health is becoming more widely talked about and as a result of this, CBD has shot to the forefront of the media as a potential cure. Although no official research has supported this, it is definitely something that is spiking a trend in consumer demand, so we can expect to see a lot more CBD soft drinks throughout 2019.
“Just a grande, iced, sugar-free, vanilla latte with soy milk, please.” You’ve all heard it and eye rolled in the Starbucks queue, but all jokes aside, plant based drinks and dairy alternatives are becoming increasingly popular. With veganism and “plant-based” diets on the rise, it is unsurprising that companies creating more and more plant-based options.
Veganism is becoming not just a trend, but a lifestyle change, for many consumers and it appears that as people are made more aware about the sustainability and ethics of the food and drinks they consume they are adopting more of a plant-based diet, whether that means completely vegan, vegetarian or even just flexitarian.
Meat-free and vegan items sales increased by 14% (to £352.1m) year-on-year to August 2018 and almost 300,000 people signed up to Veganuary in 2019, an increase from just 169,000 the year before.
I think that an increase in plant-based drinks is a trend we will continue to see increase as veganism continues to grow in popularity, so watch this space!
It isn’t all doom and gloom for the alcohol industry, and among the health conscious millennials, there are still consumers who enjoy popping to a bar on Friday nights and indulging in a few drinks. One spirit in particular seems to have an imperishable reputation. Gin was the drink of 2018, and its popularity is only expected to grow into 2019.
There are now more than 300 spirit distilleries across the UK which has more than doubled since 2015 and is set to continue. The introduction of “posh” tonic water brands and flavoured gins has increased variety in the hospitality market and made it more popular and desirable. With the continuing innovation from gin distilleries, it’s exciting to see what 2019 will bring to the gindustry!