By Andrew Starke

The cider category has continued to enjoy exceptional sales growth as it outpaces all other alcoholic brands in the Australian liquor category, according to a Nielsen report.

It found that, while established liquor categories such as beer and ready-to-drink (RTD) have struggled to make sales in the soft retail environment, more consumers are turning to cider as their alcoholic beverage of choice.

This is hardly surprising given that there is presently nearly double the number of cider brands available to choose from compared to last year.

The Nielsen report revealed that cider sales have increased by just over a third (34.7 percent) in value terms and just over a fifth (23.2 percent) in volume terms compared to a year ago.

Considering that the liquor market is currently decreasing at 0.5 percent annually, the report concluded that this is a ‘phenomenal achievement’ and accentuates just how well cider is performing.

By way of example, the wine segment may be twelve times bigger in value size, but the cider segment has contributed more in terms of value growth to the total liquor market in the past year.

Overall, cider has gained a 0.5 percent increase in value share over past 12 months and now represents 1.8 percent of total liquor purchases in Australia.

On the new product development front, forty-five new cider brands have been introduced over the past 24 months, nearly doubling the average number of active cider brands in the market.

“New product development in the cider is significant and currently has 89 active brands, half of which were introduced in the past two years,” said Liz Watkinson, Director of Nielsen’s Liquor Services Group, said.

“It’s incredible to think that new product development is currently responsible for over a quarter (27 percent) of total cider growth in Australia.”

The Nielsen report goes on to highlight the potential categories that cider could target in order to align drinking occasions and ultimately steal dollar share.

The full 2011 Cider Report is now available to purchase by contacting your Nielsen representative or by emailing Jessica Cho.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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