While many consumers around the world are reducing their alcohol intake and seeking to drink less beer, they are increasingly happy to trade up quantity for higher quality. Craft is becoming a global mainstream trend and ordering a beer is no longer a simple task, with an ever-increasing variety of beer types available to consumers. As with wine, this is helping to elevate perceptions of the product, showcasing beer’s complexity and sophistication. A wide variety of styles also allows beer drinkers to choose what best suits their palate, their meal type, or the specific occasion. More choice also has the potential to recruit new consumers, many of whom previously thought of beer as something generic-tasting and not for them.
Another growth avenue for brewers is sweeter-tasting “near-beer” such as beers with added flavours or soft drinks, ciders, and flavoured malt beverages. Such flavour innovation appeals to the Millennial “sweet tooth” and their desire for more flavour intensity, in contrast to the milder taste of most mainstream unflavoured beers.
Finally, as consumers become increasingly environmentally conscious, beer brands are extending eco-friendly commitments beyond recyclable packaging and introducing beer made with upcycled ingredients.