Christmas drinks-themed NPD disrupted – Mintel

Alcoholic beverages comprised the key category for Christmas drink innovations between 2006 and 2008 but this tailed off in 2009 and 2010, according to a report on Christmas Retailing in Ireland from Mintel, released earlier last year.

Alcoholic beverage manufacturers have received a significant amount of negative publicity regarding binge-drinking over the Festive season and combined with the economic downturn, the release of Christmas-themed drinks has been disrupted, states the report.

Non-alcoholic beverages shored up the level of new products released for 2010.

Beer was the most popular category for new product releases with 22 recorded over the past five years.

And Mintel points out, “Some 23 per cent of RoI consumers and 17 per cent of NI consumers are swayed from their usual shopping destinations to take advantage of offers on drinks. Though offers on food appeal to consumers more during the Christmas period, this still represents a sizeable segment. With the emphasis on offers, the concentration may be on competitively-priced versions of their regular drinks rather than specially-themed or new drinks products”.

Mintel also points out, “With consumers more focused on value than seasonal appeal, there is much more limited scope for Christmas-specific NPD. However, as stated previously, the market for drink as gifts is relatively strong. More generic, as opposed to Christmas-specific, gift packs with a good value proposition would fit well with the current consumer trends”.

And as we reported in our Industry Report on the drinks market at Christmas last month, customer loyalty is tested in the Christmas period when 34 per cent of RoI consumers and 26 per cent of NI consumers shop around to take advantage of special offers on groceries. Alcohol promotions have a lesser, but still significant effect for drawing consumers into stores, reports Mintel.

Sign Up for Drinks Industry Ireland

Get a free weekly update on Drinks Industry trade news, direct to your inbox. Sign up now, it's free