Finland's K Group believes the beverage culture in Finland has changed as more and more people are choosing non-alcoholic counterparts for beers, ciders, and cocktails.
Sales of non-alcoholic beers have increased by 118%, and sales of non-alcoholic ciders, long drinks, and cocktails have increased by 94% compared to two years ago, the retailer noted citing sales data.
In a survey conducted by the K-Group, one-fifth of consumers said they choose a non-alcoholic beverage because of its taste.
Aki Erkkilä , Kesko's director of purchasing and sales of industrial products in the grocery division, said, "You don't want to compromise on taste, you want an experience to drink, but without alcohol.
"More attention has been paid to health and well-being, and the sober curious phenomenon has been raising its head for several years. Both of these trends have increased the popularity of non-alcoholic beverages."
Non-alcoholic beverages are most often consumed at home with food (58%), but the non-alcoholic option is also preferred at parties and dinner parties (27%), or after a sport (27%).
The study also revealed that 19% of respondents did not consume alcohol at all, and 15% consumed only infrequently.
K-Group Meeting Demand
The K-Group has met the increased demand in the category by investing in a wide range of non-alcoholic beverages.
Its range already includes more than 150 different non-alcoholic beers, and more than 120 non-alcoholic ciders, cocktails, and wines.
In January, the retailer will supplement the selection with the non-alcoholic Olvi Iisalmi cocktail.
The non-alcoholic novelty is seasoned with The Helsinki Distilling Company's orange distillate, which is made from surplus oranges in the K-Group's central warehouse and the orange peel of K-stores' orange juice machines.
"Super premium cocktails have been on the rise for a few years now, which is why it’s great to be able to offer Super Premium for non-alcoholic cocktails as well. Hopefully, this product, manufactured at Olvi's Iisalmi plant, will help encourage people to think about a circular economy," said Olli Heikkilä, Olvi's marketing director .
Timo Jäske, Kesko's director of responsibility in the grocery trade, added, ''We are actively seeking and developing circular economy models with our partners.
"This product alone will not solve the food waste challenges, but it will make us think in new ways and find surprising solutions on the way to more sustainable products.''