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Cellar Trends Releases Post Lockdown On-Trade Predictions

As the anticipation around the reopening of the on-trade continues to build, the team at Cellar Trends (CT) have drawn up some predictions on how recent trends combined with changes in consumer behavior over the last 12 months are likely to impact the 2021 on-trade environment.

At the heart of these predictions are four consumer groups the CT team think will play a key role in shaping the ‘new normal.’

1. Experimental Beer Drinkers

It is no secret that many of the UK population are longing for the moment they can once again enjoy a pint in the pub. However, the team at CT believe that the on-trade should expect post lockdown consumers to have a wider beer repertoire and be more experimental with regards to both provenance and brand choice.

Beer was the clear off-trade winner during 2020 as consumers moved to drinking at home. The fastest growth area was World/Discovery Beer tracking at 50% volume growth.*1 Emma Harris, Cellar Trends Senior Brand Manager for Beer and Spirits, comments, “We know that consumers have enjoyed experimenting with world beer brands during lockdown and fully expect this to translate into the on trade going forward. It is therefore perfect timing for leading Portuguese brand Super Bock to be joining the portfolio in April and we have been working hard to create tailored on-trade drive plans for both Super Bock and Chang.”

2. Cocktail Connoisseurs

Liqueurs were another winning off-trade growth category in 2020 as consumers tried to recreate the on-trade experience at home. The on-trade cocktail market was worth £624m and grew +6.4% during 2019.*2 Combine this category growth with the longstanding trend for premiumisation and increasing consumer demand for ‘added value experiences’ within the on-trade environment, and it is no wonder the CT team are predicting a ‘cocktail boom’.

Gareth Franklin, Luxardo Global Brand Ambassador, comments, “As we emerge from lockdown into the initial ‘outdoor only’ on-trade environment followed by the summer trading period, the conditions are perfectly set for strong growth in Spritz and Aperitivo serves in particular. We expect many accounts to offer Spritz menus and even account specific signature Spritz serves. We are excited to see how simple serves such as the Limoncello and Bianco Spritz will help accounts offer added value to their customers.”

3. Rum Lovers

Prior to lockdown, Rum was growing at 7% in value*3 and is currently delivering impressive growth in the off-trade of 38%.*4 Expected step-change growth for the Rum category has been a long running prediction and the CT team expect to see this projection become a reality in 2021.

Against this backdrop Katie Warren, Marketing Director at Cellar Trends, comments, “We are really excited to see what we can achieve with Bumbu Rum in 2021. As one of the fastest growing rums in the off-trade, currently growing at +156%*1 and in triple digit growth in the on-trade prior to lockdown*5, Bumbu is a unique proposition with a rapidly growing loyal consumer base. The ever-increasing base of Bumbu consumers will unquestionably seek out this brand when they return to the on trade.”

4. Premium Spirit Afficionados

A recent CGA survey found that 1 in 4 consumers missed 'treating' themselves due to the closure of the on-trade.*6 Prior to lockdown, Gin was the fastest growing category, with premium and above growing 21% in volume and 23% in value and Premium and above Vodka growing 5% in volume and 8% value.*5

Craig Chapman, Head of Brands at Cellar Trends, comments, “We are convinced that we will see strong growth for premium brands when the on-trade reopens. Over the last quarter in the off-trade Brockmans Gin has tracked growth of 57%, Stoli Premium +49% and Stoli Flavours an impressive 260%.*1 These brands are outperforming category growth and we are looking forward to working with our accounts to help translate this into the on-trade environment.”

As the 12th April fast approaches, the team at Cellar Trends will be once again distributing a range of free of charge ‘kick-starter kits’ to support customers ahead of the on-trade reopening. In addition, the team have developed new serve POS and furniture to support outdoor occasions while enjoying beverages, as well as new merchandise to support promotions and social media activity designed to encourage consumers to engage with the on-trade.

*1 ACN: MAT 13th Feb 2021

*2 CGA Mixed Drink Report Q1 2020

*3 CGA MAT Value Yr/Yr data to 28th Dec 2019

*4 ACN MAT Value Yr/Yr data to 13th Feb 2021

*5 CGA: MAT 28th Dec 2019

*6 CGA Consumer Pulse Nov 2020

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