Consumers seeking higher-end beer, wine and spirits, study finds

STEVENS, Pa. — A recent report from the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States found consumers' tastes and preferences among drinkers are changing. While beer remains the alcoholic beverage of choice, reports the Beer Marketer's Insights, customers are trading up to purchase more wine and spirits in general, and more high-end beer, wine and spirits in particular.

The overall distilled spirits market grew 4.5% in 2012 to reach $21.3 billion in supplier gross revenues, DISCUS reported. Importantly, the high-end and super-premium segments of the market drove the overall industry's growth. The high-end priced segment rose 4.8% from 2011 to 2012 and super-premium was up even more at 8.9%. By contrast, the value-priced, up only 1.8%, and the premium segments, up only 2.1%, lagged.

With more consumers choosing the high-end of the distilled spirits market, meeting the needs and desires of the affluent customers with their greater spending power and unique preferences is the key for marketers to find future growth and success for their brands.

To provide marketing-focused insights, information and understanding of the affluent wine, spirits and beer consumer market is the goal of a new Unity Marketing study. The next wave of Unity Marketing's Luxury Tracking Study will include a special investigation among 1,200+ affluent consumers, the top 20% of U.S. households based on income, surveying their high-end and luxury wine, spirits and craft beer preferences.

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