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RTDs only category to see volume growth in 2020

The ready-to-drink (RTD) category is the only beverage alcohol sector expected to see growth in 2020, with volumes forecast to increase 43%, according to IWSR Drinks Market Analysis.

IWSR forecasts RTDs will be the only category to experience volume growth in 2020

The RTD category is expected to benefit from a ‘strong performance’ in the US, which is the biggest RTD market in the world by volume.

In the US alone, the RTD sector is expected to report volume growth of 35.3% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from 2019-2024, stealing market share mainly from beer. The RTD category will surpass the size of any other spirits category by volume by the end of 2020, IWSR has predicted.

In terms of international spirits such as baijiu and shōchū, volumes are forecast to be down 7.2% this year.

Canadian whisky and American whiskey are the only categories forecast to grow in volume consumption in 2020.

The IWSR said American whiskey would be one of the ‘most resilient spirits’ through to 2024, and was also optimistic about Cognac, Armagnac, agave-based spirits, Irish whiskey and Japanese whiskey.

Non-alcoholic ‘spirits’ are also forecast to grow, but at a ‘slightly lower pace’ due to the impact of Covid-19 on the on-trade in 2020.

IWSR’s latest market insight also suggests consumer habits have ‘remained steady’ across most markets, with increases driven by younger, urban and more affluent consumers who are ‘relatively comfortable in the new normal’.

Mark Meek, CEO of IWSR Drinks Market Analysis, said: “Covid-19 has had a polarising effect on the world economy and thereby the global beverage alcohol market. Large markets such as the US and China have survived the best, while less developed regions and countries such as Africa, Mexico and Argentina have unfortunately suffered more.

“Very premium high-end spirits have also held up well, while low-end and value products have seen gains in struggling markets as Covid-19 leads to downtrading. Some of the more standard middle ground categories, blended Scotch for example, have lost share.”

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