Sales of 9 litre cases fell from 1,759,151m two years ago compared to 1,232,788m this year with vodka falling in value from £1,880.5m in 2020 to £1.366.2m (27.3%) in January 2022.
However, in the three months to January 2022, total sales of vodka were up 19.2%, increasing from £457.6m to £545.6m with sales of 9 litre cases up 14.7% in the same quarter, likely due to the 2020 lockdowns.
Sales of flavoured vodka during the same quarter saw even more success, increasing from £28.8m to £37.7m (30.9%) with sales of 9 litre cases up 30.5%, increasing from 23,074m for the same quarter two years previous to 30,108m.
CGA senior client manager Tom Quinn said: “On the quarter this year, vodka prevails as the key spirit category in growth vs two years ago as high tempo occasions get back into full swing and cocktails being a key trend post-lockdown.
Flavoured vodka sales soar
“It was because of this growth vodka was able to steal value share of spirits by 2.2ppts (percentage points), giving the category 28% of total value sales for spirits."
Sales of 9 litre cases of standard vodka decreased by 30.9%, dropping from 1,355,942m to 936,848m, whereas standard flavoured vodka only saw a drop in sales of 0.6%, falling from 14,470m to 14,380m.
However, in the three months to January 2022, sales of flavoured vodka soared by 77%, rising from £3.7m in the same quarter two years ago, to £6.5m.
Total sales of premium vodka fell from £371.6m to £275.9m (25.8%) while total sales of super premium vodka fell by 23.8%, from £169.2m to £128.8m when compared with the same period in 2020.
Across all subcategories for vodka, flavoured vodka seems to have proved most popular, but per quarter the spirits’ sales of 9 litre cases and value as a whole appear to paint a positive picture for the category, according to the data from CGA.
This comes after sales of gin have noticeably decreased in recent months, forcing some to question if the gin bubble has burst and, if so, could vodka, in particular flavoured vodka, be taking over.
Quinn added: “A lot of the success from flavoured vodka can be accredited to the continuing success of cocktails and in particular the Pornstar Martini which, based on managed sales captured via CGA’s Volume Pool, remains a top fixture amongst the most popular cocktail serves in the on trade.
“A potential reason why we have seen vodka sales bounce back so strongly, aside from the late-night sector reopening, is to do with the age profile of the vodka consumer.
“We know younger consumers were the first to visit the trade upon reopening both in 2020 and in 2021, and they have been most confident to do this, so given 48% of vodka consumers are in the 18–34-year-old bracket, this has likely contributed to the resurgence of the category.”