New Moretti variant ‘can build on premium continental lager category’

By Rebecca Weller

- Last updated on GMT

New product: Heineken UK introduces new Moretti to drive growth in the continental lager category
New product: Heineken UK introduces new Moretti to drive growth in the continental lager category

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Consumer demand for craft and continental lager is growing, but premiumisation is driving growth for the categories, Heineken UK on-trade director Will Rice told The Morning Advertiser.

This comes the global brewer earlier this month launched a new variant of its Birra Moretti lager, which surpassed more than £1bn in sales last year across the on-trade and makes up almost two thirds of the imported lager category, Rice explained.

Sale di Mare, a 4.8% ABV unfiltered medium-bodied lager, has been made with a hint of Italian sea salt to provide “full-flavoured refreshment”.

Rice added: “Lager is the second most traded up category with one fifth of consumers, according to CGA data, likely to trade up, and over half of consumers willing to pay more for better quality.

“We know the premiumisation trend isn't going anywhere and that consumers are looking for new tastes and interesting brands to elevate their experience when they are out.

Complexity and intrigue 

“They want to combine some of the complexity and intrigue offered by craft and continental lagers while retaining the balance of flavour, taste and lightness of more accessible, easy to drink segments.

“The launch of Sale di Mare presents an opportunity for pubs to tap into this sales opportunity and further build on their premium continental lager offering.”

In addition, recent data from CGA showed​ world lager was the most popular sub-category in the beer segment last year, boosted by premiumisation, with a 23.3% share of total LAD sales.

“Representing a real opportunity for operators to further tap into this category, Sale di Mare can sit alongside and compliment L’Autentica on the bar.

“The two beers taste very different, L'Autentica is a well-balanced 4.6% ABV lager with some hoppy, fruity notes, finished with moderate bitterness and a clean aftertaste while Sale di Mare has a slightly fuller taste profile than L'Autentica.

Extra flavour 

“Hazy in colour, it delivers distinct citrus and pine hop aromas - perfect for those looking to try a beer with a little extra flavour, from a brand they know and trust”, Rice continued.

The launch of Sale Di Mare, which will be available in 20L brewlock, 30L kegs and 330ml bottle format, will be supported by a muti-million-pound nationwide marketing campaign, including PoS material for pubs and branded glassware.

In addition, Heineken UK will also offer one operator the chance to win an Italian food and drink pairing for customers at their pub.

The intimate event will explore the flavour profile of Birra Moretti Sale di Mare and how it can be paired with food to enhance culinary flavours.

Entries for the competition are open now and will run until Wednesday 13 March 2024.

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