With so much going on it can sometimes be hard to keep up with all the new trends in the drinks industry, but if you have the right support from your drinks supplier, you won’t have to. A great drinks supplier will work with you to guide you through what’s coming down the line and what will work for you and your customer. At Counterpoint Ireland, they pride themselves on offering more than just drink sales. As bars needs have changed, Counterpoint Ireland has evolved with them.
Counterpoint Ireland now proudly carries some world’s most recognised international and Irish brands, with new and exciting brands being added all the time. With a sales team of over 25 people, 2 mixologists and a full-service marketing team, they’re bringing fantastic brands to life.
When talking to Natalia Lynch, Category Development Manager at Counterpoint about trends for 2020 she summed it up by saying, ‘Today’s consumers are curious and clued in. They’re interested in brand heritage, innovation and real brand authenticity. People now take a real interest in what they’re putting in their bodies and enjoy experimenting across drinks categories in search of creating new experiences. We’re here to facilitate that.”
The world is looking towards health and wellness and it’s no different in the drinks industry. But what does this actually look like in practice? Research has shown consumers are looking for more lo-cal and no-alcohol options. With this in mind, Counterpoint Ireland has focused on bringing their clients a ‘better for you’ portfolio, enabling them to offer consumers more of what they want. This trend has led to beverage companies reformulating their products with what is considered ‘functional food ingredients’, so they can tap into this market.
One brand that are excelling in this area is The London Essence Co. Their extensive offering is unparalleled and with new launches feeding through consistently, they’ve managed to anticipate consumer wants before the mainstream catches on. Their drinks are light and low in calories, coming in at under 20kcal per 100ml, with naturally sourced sweetness and no artificial ingredients. The premium tonics and sodas are designed to accentuate the finest spirits while maintaining a light, delicate flavour and have seen huge success in the Irish market.
Nothing is more innovative than an entirely new drink offering and Counterpoint Ireland is delighted to be championing the incredible Beekon Batches. The ‘honey refresher’ has been created in Ireland by the brilliant Karen O’Neill and has been making waves since last year. Coming in at 5% ABV, Beekon Batches is made of nothing more than honey, water and yeast with no sulphites, additives or preservatives. This is an exciting development and feeds directly into the wellness trend with consumers looking for more natural options. On the launch, Karen says “How and what we are drinking is fundamentally changing at a faster rate than ever before. People are conscientiously drinking less, better and different.”
On the other end of the spectrum, trends have seen one of the oldest alcohol options growing in popularity in Ireland in recent years. Figures show the Irish wine sector is expected to grow from €1.193 million in 2018 to €1.362.7 million by 2023 at a Category Annual Growth Rate of 2.7%.
In respect of that, Niche Vines, Counterpoint’s wine division, was created to meet the needs of the on-trade by providing a multitude of wine options for the full spectrum needs that they may cater for. Counterpoint Ireland has worked on creating a range that is broad enough for its customer’s needs while offering excellent value for money. In line with their ethos, the offering is constantly evolving to meet the ever-changing needs of their valued customers. Niche Vines has curated a range tailored specifically to specific account needs. Highlights include Snarepoint, a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc from the revered Marlborough region which recently took home Gold at the NOFFLA Wine of the Year awards.
Pre-made beverages once suffered the stigma of being viewed as cheap or of low quality but recent launches in this category have turned things around. Aided by the upsurge in the craft movement, this category has managed to change decades-old views around RTDs while the industry has seen cocktails in this category grow by double digits year on year. Launched in 2019, the Mil Spritz and Mil Spritz Rosa catapulted onto the scene in a roaring success. A mix of Mil gin, tonic and grapefruit, the cans really struck a chord with consumers looking for a high-quality product that was convenient, no doubt helped along by the beautiful branding and clever marketing campaign aimed at its core customer.
While all things gin still dominate the market, 2020 is set to see Tequila take a chunk of the market share. With an expected growth of 3.2% in the coming year, Counterpoint Ireland has anticipated the needs of consumers with two exciting new launches – Kah and Cenote Tequilas. Kah will garner lots of fans with it’s cool skull bottle design while Cenote sits in the ultra-premium bracket, offering something for the discerning customer.
Safe to say gin is going nowhere for the foreseeable future, expected to be the fastest-growing category in volume terms with a CAGR of 9.7% between 2018 and 2023. We’re set to see an upturn in more varied offerings with millennial pink gin making its mark. The award-winning Ha’penny Rhubarb gin sits firmly in this category, giving consumers an expertly balanced high-end gin at a fair price.
2020 is set to see a shift in consumer needs, with a real hunger for transparency, authenticity from brands and an uptake in health and wellness offerings. From completely new products to overall experience, people now expect something new and exciting and Counterpoint Ireland will make sure you and your business are ready for it.