Consumers embrace flexi-sober lifestyle

By Rebecca Weller

- Last updated on GMT

‘Flexi-sober’: New data shows punters want to cut down their alcohol intake (Credit: Getty/LeoPatrizi)
‘Flexi-sober’: New data shows punters want to cut down their alcohol intake (Credit: Getty/LeoPatrizi)

Related tags Soft drinks

Consumers are opting for a ‘flexi-sober’ lifestyle in 2024, new research from premium soft drinks and mixers brand, Fentimans, has revealed.

This was revealed in the company’s fifth edition of its Market Report in partnership with CGA by NIQ.

The report explores the changing attributes and behaviours of consumers in both the on trade and off trade industries over the last 18 months.

It looks deep into the impact of consumers drinking less but better, the surge of no and low alcohol and the rise in food-led occasions.

A key trend explored is the major uptick in consumption of no and low alcoholic drinks, particularly within the cocktail category.

Permanent change 

This comes as people continue to be health conscious in 2024, with more than two thirds (70%) of consumers proactively trying to lead a healthier lifestyle.

According to the Brand Track survey, half of consumers (50%) have bought mocktails or virgin alternatives in the past 12 months, a 15% increase compared to 2023 (35%).

Fentimans marketing manager Mark Platten said: “Reduction in alcohol is now viewed as a permanent change in consumer behaviour rather than a trend.

“There are now extensive options when it comes to no and low alcohol spirits and beers but there is also a place for premium soft serves that delight consumers without replicating the taste of alcohol.”

What’s more, two in five (41%) consumers have chosen a no or low alcohol beer in the last 12 months.

A smaller but significant number have also opted for no and low alternatives to cider (17%), spirits (12%) and wine (12%) – figures that have continued to grow year on year.

Standout serves 

The data showed more than a fifth (22%) of consumers have reduced the amount of alcohol they drink in an average week, opting for no and low options for casual dining occasions.

The decision to cut down and embrace a ‘flexi-sober’ lifestyle is largely due to consumers looking to cut down their high alcohol intake (47%).

However, it is also fuelled by price and a desire to save money without compromising on the quality of the drinks they consume.

According to Platten, it is important to give consumer choice on menu and create more ‘soft first’ serves with the option to add alcohol if desired but either way, taste great.

“At Fentimans we have focused on creating standout serves which give operators the opportunity to delight consumers while keeping things simple behind the bar,” he added.

Related topics Soft & Hot Drinks

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