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Related tags: Premium packaged spirits, Alcopop, Bacardi breezer

Nowadays, every serious licensed trade outlet has a fridge behind the bar stocked with high visibility products, including flavoured alcoholic...

Nowadays, every serious licensed trade outlet has a fridge behind the bar stocked with high visibility products, including flavoured alcoholic beverages (FABs). A vital element of the “fridge” category, the FABs market is the fastest -growing alcoholic drinks sector - and certainly one of the most profitable.

What are FABs?The market initially began in 1995 with alcocarbonates such as Hooper's Hooch, Australia's notorious Two Dogs - and a plethora of gimmicky brands, but following public outcry, sales declined. These products began to be overtaken by the more adult and responsible premium packaged spirits (PPSs) containing a true spirit ingredient such as Bacardi Breezer or Smirnoff Ice. The FABs market has since proven to be a dynamic and runaway success and now accounts for 34 per cent of volume of the on-trade fridge category (source: AC Nielsen, Nov 2000).FABs overall grew by a massive 61 per cent (volume) in the last year (source: latest MAT, AC Nielsen, Nov. 2000), taking most of this share from the premium packaged lager market. With their higher average retail prices however, FABs generally offer greater returns.

Meeting consumer needsAs fashion and image increasingly pervade every area of life, drinks are subject to the same brand and “badge values” as clothes and cars, particularly for younger consumers. Premium packaged spirits are portable advertisements for their own personal image and communicate a regard for style and premium values. However, they also satisfy consumers in other ways, offering convenience, great taste and refreshment.And while other premium packaged drinks (including lager and cider) can offer these benefits too, it is only PPSs that offer the wide range of flavours and styles consumers now demand.Bacardi-Martini Limited is far and away the number one PPS manufacturer, owning Bacardi Breezer, Metz, Bacardi Rigo and V2. As unequivocal leader of the category, the company conducts ongoing in-depth research to ensure it is always in touch with consumer needs and continues to predict and drive the market. Indeed, the company has invested over £1.2million in the last year alone in this vital area of brand and category development.

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