Sales of no- and low-abv beer continue to rise even in lockdown

Robyn Black

Robyn Black

27 April 2020

Figures published by the British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) suggest that under lockdown sales of no- and low-alcohol beer have grown by 14.8% (Nielsen Scantrack, four weeks to 21 April 2020)

In the four weeks prior to that (four weeks prior to 21 March), just before lockdown was announced, Nielsen figures show no- and low-alcoholic beer sales surged by 33% year-on-year.

A recent survey by YouGov found that 16% of Brits claimed to be drinking less or not at all during lockdown and Nielsen research claims to show a trend of shoppers becoming more health conscious during the lockdown period to date – with 39% of UK shoppers aiming to prepare healthy and well-balanced meals, and 26% also trying to prepare light or low-calorie meals according to its figures.

The increase in sales of low- and no-alcohol beer during the last few years follows a huge amount of investment and innovation in to the category by UK brewers, which has helped to drive growth according to the BBPA.

Despite this growth in sales... this will be nowhere near enough to offset the lockdown of pubs and fall of beer sales from it

Emma McClarkin, chief executive of the British Beer & Pub Association, said: 'The boom in the popularity of low and no beer is very encouraging and clearly providing people with a good alternative to an alcoholic pint in the pub during this period of lockdown.

'A lot of innovation has gone into making great tasting low- and no-alcohol beer so with a bigger range of low- and no-alcohol beers than ever before, I encourage beer drinkers to give them a go!'

Despite this growth in sales during the covid-19 crisis, and growing retail sales of the overall alcohol category, the BBPA pointed out that this will be nowhere near enough to offset the lockdown of pubs and fall of beer sales from it. Particularly as seven in 10 alcoholic drinks sold in pubs are beer.

Imbibe is donating funds from our new No & Low Taste Awards 2020 to The Drinks Trust. If you’d like to enter your product, we have extended the deadline for entries until 30 April. Click through for more information.

Related content

News |  Beer & Cider

Table beer on the rise thanks to low-abv trend

Dry January might be over, but the thirst for low-abv beer is certainly not.

News |  Wine

Long read: What the no- and low-abv category's rise during lockdown means for the on-trade

Retail sales of no- and low-alcohol drinks has risen exponentially during the coronavirus pandemic. What does this mean for the UK pubs, bars and restaurants?

News |  Beer & Cider

Traditional beer styles under threat with no- and low-abv brews and cans on the rise

Popular beer distribution platform EeBriaTrade has issued a report on the current craft beer market.The report – which used data collected from Eebria

News |  Beer & Cider

BrewDog announces launch of no- and low-abv beer bar

BrewDog AF Bar in Old Street will have 15 taps of draft beer, no-abv spirits and a beer fridge.