State of the Industry - Hard Seltzer's Story

February 2, 2021

State of the Industry - Hard Seltzer’s Story

There’s no doubt that hard seltzers have taken the industry by storm. With more than 800 brands of seltzer currently in the market, the segment continues to grow as suppliers rush to introduce new flavors and value propositions.

From an outside perspective, one might think that seltzer is taking over the alcoholic beverage market as a whole while cannibalizing the sales of beer, wine, and spirits. Is it really though? Well, some of our data experts took the time to dive into the data and uncovered some unique insights.

When looking at 2019 and 2020 aggregated sales to retail data (for both on-premise and off-premise accounts) classified by segment, it’s clear that seltzer’s market share is increasing rapidly. From the pie chart below, one can infer that seltzer is taking market share from beer and cider. This has led many to believe that seltzer is cannibalizing the sales of beer and converting beer and cider drinkers to seltzer drinkers.

Hard Seltzers

Without looking at any other data in addition to market share, the assumptions above seem to be correct; however, we’re still missing a piece to the story.

Our data experts decided to take a look at correlation trends in each segment. Surprisingly, the trends show that while seltzer market share increases, sales of other segments increase as well. There is a strong correlation between seltzer and other segments like beer, and cider. So even though seltzer might be taking up a larger ‘piece of the pie’ share-wise, the ‘pie’ itself is becoming larger, and we’re led to believe that seltzer sales are benefiting the entire bev alc industry as a whole.

Hard Seltzer

The correlations shown above show us that seltzers aren’t all that consumers are drinking..they’ve just become an addition to the shopping list. The correlations help us believe that when consumers visit a liquor store, they’re buying seltzer in addition to other beverages instead of choosing one or the other.

As seltzers continue to grow, this is great news for the industry at large. A win for one is a win for all. To learn more about this topic, please join us on Friday, February 5th at 10:00 am MST to hear from our data experts.

Click here to register for the webinar.

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