Here’s CGA by NielenIQ’s reasoning:
1 Growing choice
The number of Hard Seltzers on the Irish market has gone from three to 11 in the last three years, with established suppliers and new brands investing and innovating heavily. Hard Seltzers may be fresh to the market, but their range is increasing fast. CGA’s On Premise Measurement service shows that growth has been powered by new flavour launches like Mango, Lime, Cherry and Raspberry & Rhubarb from the big brands.
2 Five-fold increase in sales
These new products have powered rapid take-up of Hard Seltzers. On-trade sales in the year to August were more than five times the €400,000 value of just three years ago. It means Hard Seltzers now have a 6.4% value share of the RTD category compared to 5.4% in 2019.
3 Rising consumer awareness
There has also been a dramatic increase in consumer awareness of Hard Seltzers since the start of Covid-19. CGA found that more than half (54%) of consumers have now heard of them—up by eight percentage points in the last 12 months. This is translating into interest, with two in five people (41%) saying they’d be likely to try Hard Seltzers if they were available when out.
4 Value a big factor…
Opus research found that nearly a third (31%) of consumers are motivated by price to buy Hard Seltzers. Another fifth (21%) said promotions or offers were driving factors. This flags the importance of value in this category—something that may well become even more significant as consumers’ discretionary spending is squeezed.
5 … But quality crucial too
Consumers have become increasingly demanding about their on-trade experiences so they want high standards as well as value. Nearly a fifth (18%) say they’re motivated to buy Hard Seltzers by their quality and a quarter (24%) cite taste as a big consideration.
“The Hard Seltzers category is quickly gaining traction across Ireland’s On Premise” said CGA by NielsenIQ’s Client Director Sian Brennan, “and it plays very well to consumers who want something different and healthier after Covid-19. “Competition is likely to get fierce in the months ahead, so suppliers will need to properly understand consumers’ needs here and identify the sweet spot of value and quality.”