What will the beverage industry look like in the future? The million dollar question that has all beverage entrepreneurs scratching their heads. Whilst we can’t predict the future, we can make educated predictions based on recent and current consumer trends! Here are growing trends that we predict will make their mark in the coming years.
No & Low Alcohol
Now more than ever before, consumers are becoming more health conscious. This increase in awareness surrounding health and wellness has manifested itself into the drinks industry in the form of ‘no and lo’ alcohol. Industry reports point to non-alcoholic beer sales in Ireland having tripled between 2017 and 2021, increasing from 1.79 litres to 5.55 litres sold per annum. 2022 saw the launch of Ireland’s first dedicated alcohol free brand Quiet Noise Brewing’ by one of Ireland’s only craft beer sommeliers, Stephen Dillon. Dillon’s endeavors in the world of alcohol-free are not limited to beers but also include a range of alcohol free spirits, with their brand “Noki”.
Another issue at the forefront of consumers minds’ is climate change. Those in the beverage industry are attempting to extinguish these concerns by reducing their carbon footprint, whilst also ensuring convenience, food safety and freshness standards are met. An example of this trend can be seen in the growth of tetra pack water, which is water packaged in 100% recyclable cartons. Green Heart water is an Irish brand who have employed tetra pak packaging in an attempt to reduce their carbon footprint.
Health benefits are slowly creeping up on consumers’ priority list. To appease this ever-increasing demand, food and beverage brands have begun to add additional functionalities to their products. Functional focused beverages are non-alcoholic drinks that contain unconventional ingredients such as protein, vitamins, minerals, probiotics, etc. This trend has exploded in the food industry, but has yet to take off to the same extent in the beverage industry. Mude beverages find themselves at the front line in the Irish functional focused beverage market.
Driven by evolving consumer behaviours and preferences the Irish beverage market is expected to withstand seismic change in the coming years. Micro and macro trends aside, it is evident that health is going to be the main driver of growth in the Irish and global beverage market.