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Brazilians swap cachaca for vodka

A new report has revealed that Brazilian consumers are developing a taste for vodka and whisky, turning away from traditional spirits cachaça and brandy.

Brazil Cachaca
The IWSR estimate that cachaca and brandy will lose 4.7 million cases between them over the next five years

In a recent forecast report by data agency International Wine and Spirits Research (IWSR), it is predicted that whisky will grow by 1.2 million nine-litre cases between 2013 and 2018, while vodka will grow by 2.6 million cases.

At the same time, it is thought that brandy and cachaça will lose almost 4.7 million cases between them.

The popularity of brandy and cachaça has been diminishing over the past few years in Brazil, with vodka becoming increasingly fashionable in clubs and bars while whiskey remains a key status symbol for the aspirational middle class.

The IWSR report states that brandy is failing to attract younger consumers and a narrowing price gap between bandy and imported spirits is making it easier to trade up. Vodka is frequently replacing cachaça as the base spirit in the national caipirinha cocktail, which is also being gradually usurped by the caiprioska cocktail, made with vodka.

It is predicted that although local cachaça volumes will continue to diminish, the emergence of its premium and super-premium segments will aid value recovery. Cachaça producers will also endeavour to reach a global audience through promotions at the FIFA World Cup 2014 and the 2016 Olympic Games.

Eduardo Bendzius, marketing and sales director of Ypióca, Brazil’s leading premium cachaça brand, recently told The Spirits Business these events will enhance the spirits global visibility

He said: “The World Cup and Olympics are fantastic opportunities to showcase and grow the Ypióca brand on a global scale, as cachaça is the largest spirits category in Brazil and the national drink.

“The drink is embedded in Brazilian culture and is consumed across all demographic segments, age groups and regions.”

Overall, the IWSR expects that the spirits market in Brazil will remain steady over next five years, thanks to additional growth from Tequila, rum and liqueurs.

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