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    June overtakes Dry January as sale of alcohol-free alternatives surge

    Sales of non-alcoholic drinks surged in June, outranking figures from Dry January this year, as demand for alcohol-free options continues to climb in the country.

    Demand for no- and low-alcohol alternatives has continued to climb throughout the year, despite January traditionally setting the benchmark throughout the year. Figures from Dry January have been left in the dust, according to The Telegraph, which reported yesterday that sales of alcohol-free drinks have surged so far this summer.

    UK supermarket Tesco has said that sales of no and low beer are 25 per cent higher in June than January. This is at a time when the price of a pint of lager in the on-trade has risen by more than 50p within the space of a single year, according to data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS). In pubs, sales are up 23 per cent on a year ago, and nearly nine in 10 have at least one option, the British Beer and Pub Association said.

    It all comes at a time when sales of normal beers are falling – down six per cent on a year ago, according to market researchers Circana.

    Total average drinks sales in Britain’s managed venues in the week to Saturday 17 June were 7 per cent ahead of the same week in 2022, according to CGA by NIQ’s Drinks Recovery Tracker. However, ONS figures show that inflation stands at 8.7 per cent, meaning the week’s sales were slightly behind in real terms.

    Jess Edmondson, beer buyer at Tesco, said: “The current boom is down to the number of authentic-tasting products now available from brewers who are using high quality ingredients and more advanced methods.

    “This revolution has grown very quickly in the last five years and instead of the thin-tasting alcohol-free beers that were on the market back then, shoppers can now find fuller-bodied equivalents that taste like the real thing.”

    Due to “more confidence in the quality now available”, alcohol-free options are also seeing consumers buying bigger pack sizes instead of individual serves.

    This January, those taking the Dry January challenge had the option of Peroni 0%, Asahi 0%, and Guinness 0%. Alcohol-free IPAs, stouts, ales and craft lagers have also been rolled out by independents in the past year, stated the report.

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