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Industry Trends

Zero proof. Maximum profit.

November 29, 2023

The market for nonalcoholic beverages and what food service operators need to know

How do you know which food and beverage trends make sense for your business and which should be canned? If you’re looking for a profitable, popular and growing trend, look no further than the mocktail.

Cocktails without booze hit the right note with many consumers. Crafted to taste like the real thing, booze-free cocktails swap alcohol with zero-proof rum, tequila, whiskey or gin, or can be made with fruit juices and sparkling water. Entegra consulted its culinary services team to find out if the mocktail craze is going to fizzle out or continue to sparkle.

John Csukor, Entegra’s Head of Culinary, has developed clean cocktails and shared his advice. “The technique and craft that goes into preparing a great clean cocktail is beyond basic bartending. It takes skill and an understanding of balance, flavor, viscosity and finish to create an excellent offering.” Csukor, along with his team of culinarians at The Entegra Performance Kitchen, work with F&B pros to create custom menus that align operators’ business needs with consumers’ preferences.

The health and wellness tie-in driving F&B consumption

Consumers are still, and rightfully, obsessed with wellness. The category is booming. According to a 2022 McKinsey consumer survey, spending on wellness products and services is over $450 billion in the United States and growing at more than 5 percent annually.

Wellness trends significantly impact consumer choices regarding food and beverages. Hospitality stands to benefit because the trend:

  • Reflects a growing awareness and emphasis on living a healthy lifestyle.
  • Builds loyalty among discerning customers who appreciate being offered the healthy alternatives they want.
  • Caters to Gen Z preferences, an influential demographic for hospitality operators.
  • Gives operators a healthy profit on a premium offering.

Product spotlight: Bubly

BublyBubly bellini bliss is PepsiCo’s “first-ever” mocktail, with tropical flavors of peach, pineapple and mango. The alcohol-free drink contains no artificial flavors or sweeteners, as well as no calories.

How can you use the zero-proof trend to boost your business?

According to 2022 data from Nielsen, non-alcoholic spirit substitutes were up 88.4% to $5.03 million a year. So how can you tap into the sales potential?

  1. Focus on wellness ingredients like CBD, lavender or matcha to promote different aspects of health and peak your visitors’ curiosity.
  2. Experiment with crafting special flavor profiles.
  3. Create an experience in a glass with a beautiful presentation that stands out from what your competition offers.

"The clean cocktail movement is in high peak,” says Csukor, citing dynamic combinations of ingredients, experimentation and innovation. “The drinks are gaining in popularity as adults seek alternatives due to health issues resulting from alcohol consumption and a general ‘better feeling’ the day after. They’re seeking longer, healthier lives and, as a more immediate concern, to drive safely home from social gatherings.”

A NielsenIQ study supports Csukor’s understanding of consumer behavior and motivation, showing that 22% of consumers reported that they were cutting back on consuming alcohol and drinking less.

“If created with skill and creativity, these drinks fall into the same profit category as those with alcohol. The ingredients still cost a respectable raw cost per bottle, just like their liquor counterparts,” said Csukor. “It’s up to the mixologist to create compelling formulas, names and flavors that demand the selling price. Done right, the category promises the same profitability and revenue generation that the alcohol category has appreciated for a century.”

Interested in crafting clean cocktails for your menu or realizing cost savings throughout your business? Call us at 833-977-1765 or contact us to get more information about putting Entegra’s purchasing power and business performance improvement solutions to work for you.

November 29, 2023

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