Sophistication is creeping ever-faster into the mixers market as consumers seek a suitable ‘craft’ mixer to accompany their craft spirit of choice.
And increasingly, growing numbers of consumers are choosing not to drink on a night out, seeking instead a soft drink they can enjoy with a premium cachet – their non-alcoholic treat.
‘Mature appeal’ seems to be the catchphrase with consumers worldwide demanding more ‘craft-style’ non alcoholic beverages according to market researchers GlobalData (formerly Canadean).
Sophisticated sodas not only offer an increasingly attractive alternative for consumers who wish to limit their alcohol intake, but also appeal to broader demographics, according to GlobalData’s consumer insight.
The company’s latest report confirms that alcohol moderation and avoidance is generating interest in premium, non-alcoholic soft drinks to be consumed instead of alcohol, a trend witnessed for both everyday consumption and special occasions.
Indeed 41% of global alcohol drinkers surveyed by Canadean claim to pay high attention to reducing the amount of alcohol consumed, while 49% say they’re conscious of the long-term health impact of drinking too much alcohol.
However Consumer Insight Analyst for GlobalData Tanvi Savara says that the appeal of adult soft drinks stretches beyond those looking to reduce their alcohol intake to reach older soft drink consumers seeking sophisticated, upscale offerings that appeal to mature tastes.
“Consumers value products that are distinct from the mass market and exude superior quality through unique flavours, natural premium ingredients and ‘craft’ production techniques,” Savara explains, pointing out that the company’s consumer research found that 56% of consumers globally would like to see more craft-style non-alcoholic beverages.
She adds that brands are also launching products that replicate flavours and sensory experiences commonly associated with alcoholic drinks.
“Innovation is evolving beyond virgin cocktail blends to more sophisticated nuances by taking inspiration from production techniques and ingredients synonymous with alcoholic drinks. For example, Proper Soda Co’s Hop Soda in the US claims to contain a blend of hops but without the bitterness associated with an IPA,” Savara concludes.
Even for the four-fifths of the population who do take an alcoholic drink when out, a quality mixer has risen in significance when they’re making their choice.
According to Global Brands, two in five consumers now search out more unusual flavours in their drinks as they tap into new and exciting experiential activities.
Importance of quality serve
The quality of the serve can significantly influence the sales graph in an outlet.
Research conducted by CGA in the UK found that 37% of consumers would leave a venue after being served a badly-made drink with no intentions of returning. And it’s been found that 16% would not order another spirit and mixer in that outlet; if anything they’d be likely to trade down, consuming a less profitable alternative instead.
In Mixing With Quality, a just-released CGA report into the importance and opportunities for premium mixers within long mixed drinks and cocktails, it was found that the premium mixer drinker visits the on-trade 3.6 times a month to the standard drinker’s 3.0 visits. Similarly the average number of drinks in the premium mixer drinker’s repertoire is 4.1 compared to the non-premium mixer consumer’s 3.5.
CGA Strategy also found that where standard soft drinks enjoyed a 3.1% increase in value year-on-year, this value increase is more pronounced in the premium (13.6%) and Super premium categories (27.2%).
The report found too that some 34% of gin-drinkers choose a premium mixer as a preferred style of service which compares with 15% for brandy/Cognac, 11% for vodka, 10% for rum and 8% for whisk(e)y.
CGA’s Mixing With Quality report is available to purchase in full, by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.
On the other hand, UK bar group Be As One discovered that more than 75% of customers are happy to pay for a better quality cocktail.
Britvic’s Senior Shopper Marketing Manager for Out of Home in the UK Russel Kirkham confirms that offering premium soft drinks as unusual mixers is one way for a retail outlet to drive sales.
Irish mixers market
Nielsen figures indicate a 3.2% growth in the Carbonated Soft Drinks market in Ireland reflecting a value increase of 2.3% to just under €241 million MAT to January.
Throughout this period mineral waters showed volume growth of 5.8% and value growth of 4.2%.
At the same time, GlobalData figures on the Tonics, Mixers and Bitters market indicates growth of 12.8% between 2015 and 2016 to 10.57 million litres. For this year, 2017, however, it forecasts growth of 20% to 12.68 million litres.
GlobalData breaks this growth down into a huge 39% leap in mixer sales volumes and a lesser growth of 4% for tonic volume sales.
To celebrate the 165th year anniversary of its iconic Club Mixers range, Britvic has unveiled a complete relaunch of its range which has been lifting Irish spirits and has been a part of Irish pub culture since 1852.
Club Mixers has introduced an improved Tonic recipe, iconic new non-returnable glass bottles (available in 125ml and 200ml formats) and a refreshed Through The Line-supported brand identity.
A significant marketing campaign for Club Mixers will include experiential and sampling marketing, consumer PR, trade press, Point of Purchase and digital support. Club Mixers will be showcasing its improved liquid and bottle to consumers at several events over the Summer. This is the first in a series of investments in the pipeline as Club Mixers looks to reconnect with the consumer through the brand’s unique heritage, new look, improved liquids and support plan. The new bottles and improved liquid will be available from April onwards and can be ordered through your Counterpoint Rep.
The Club Mixers portfolio offers a wide range of flavours, best enjoyed served chilled over ice with your garnish of choice. Club Mixers are the perfect accompaniment to spirits, expertly designed to blend deliciously with gins, vodkas and whiskeys – or even to be enjoyed on their own over ice.
Fentimans has been making the finest quality natural botanical drinks since 1905. Its award-winning beverages are hand-crafted using the finest natural ingredients from all around the world. To create a superior taste unlike other carbonated drinks, Fentimans makes its drinks using the time-honoured botanical brewing technique. This traditional process takes a full seven days from start to finish.
It’s this traditional botanical brewing process that produces the depth of flavour, mouth-feel and rich texture which are the hallmark of Fentimans drinks today. This is the Fentimans way which has stood the test of time – with the knowledge and expertise being passed from generation to generation of the Fentimans family.
The result is a superior-tasting, natural range of beverages. Along with its solid range of soft drinks to be enjoyed on its own Fentimans also produces a broad range of mixers that are an ideal match for a variety of premium spirits. The Fentimans range of soft drinks and mixers is available nationwide for both on- and off trades. Fentimans is distributed by C&C Gleeson, one of the country’s leading manufacturers, distributors and wholesalers in 275ml & 750ml while the mixers range is available in 125ml and 250ml.
For more information visit www.fentimans.com
Poacher’s Premium Irish beverages are all 100% natural and produced and bottled in Wexford. They’re made with Poacher’s own spring water, contain Irish botanicals and are very low in sugar so that the spirits they’re mixed with can shine through.
Poacher’s currently has three products in its portfolio and they come in a 200 ml bottle.
Poacher’s Classic Tonic Water has a robust quinine flavour and pairs beautifully with floral and spicy spirits such as Gunpowder Gin or Hendrick’s.
Poacher’s Citrus Tonic Water is softer and more fragrant; it’s best served with herbal or fruity spirits such as Beefeater or Dingle Gin.
Poacher’s Ginger Ale is made with African ginger extract and Kilkenny apples, perfect to serve with Irish whiskeys like Jameson and a wedge of freshly-cut lime.
These are the first premium mixers to be made in Ireland and Poacher’s will be popping at festivals around the country soon.
Stay updated on its social media site. www.facebook.com/PoachersWell @PoachersWell.
Distributed in the Republic of Ireland by Tindal Wine Merchants and in Northern Ireland by Prohibition NI.
Schweppes – The taste that separates character from personality
Invented by Jacob Schweppes ‘Creator of Bubbles’ in 1783, Schweppes has been charming tongues ever since. Jacob’s passion and pioneering spirit gave birth to a collection of adult flavours and effervescence; from soda water in the 18th Century to tonic water, ginger and lemonade in the 19th Century and bitter lemon in the 20th Century. The slimline range has also been available to consumers since 1965. The iconic range has undergone an evolution with a new look and feel launched at the end of 2016 together with the option of a 200ml pack to complement the existing 125ml range.
The number one mixer across the island of Ireland, Schweppes’ legendary tonic remains the signature taste of the brand with its delicate balance of bitterness, acidity and citric sweetness. The tonic only uses natural flavorings and contains the highest quality ingredients including quinine from cinchona bark.
As well as being a refreshing soft drink, Schweppes has become the quintessential mixer for publicans, the one to beat amongst discerning G&T drinkers. The on-trade NARTD category grew by 3.7% in 2016, driven by mixers. With Summer on the way, this is a key time for on-premise outlets to ensure they’re prepared and well-stocked with the right mix of soft drink products to meet customers’ needs.
To order Schweppes or any of Coca-Cola HBC’s range contact our Customer Service Helpline on (RoI) 1890 262226 or (NI) 0845 6088889.
“If ¾ of your drink is the mixer, mix with the best”.
Fever Tree is the true premium mixer of choice. Proudly served in seven of the 10 top restaurants in the world, the Fever Tree range was voted ‘Best Selling’ and ‘Top Trending Tonic Water’ by the world’s best bartenders this year for the third year running.
The growing Fever Tree tonic portfolio includes a wonderful array of diverse flavour profiles to mix or enjoy on their own including: Indian Tonic Water, Aromatic Tonic Water and Elderflower Tonic and Ginger Beer. Fever Tree tonic is created for fine spirit pairings.
There are no artificial sweeteners or colouring in any Fever Tree products, only natural flavours with no artificial preservatives. With small bubbles and a smooth, delicate texture, the wide range of Fever Tree tonic flavours was created to accompany only the finest spirits and offer something for everyone.
The most recent addition to the Fever Tree range is Madagascan Cola, the first Cola specifically created for mixing. With a rich blend of kola nut, exotic spices of cassia from Indonesia and sweet Madagascan vanilla, it’s the ideal creation to enhance the array of flavours of the finest rums, whiskeys and bourbons.
If three quarters of your drink is the mixer, make it like the world’s best bartenders and mix with the best.