Constellation shared some of its proprietary research from its insights and analytics team to illustrate that “high end brands are the next wave of growth in the beer business,” as Constellation chief commercial officer Bruce Jacobson phrased it at Gold Network Summit. Of past 30 day drinkers surveyed for 12 mos thru last summer, 73% had consumed high end beers in last 30 days. That was up from 60% 5 yrs earlier. During same period, percentage who drank premium beers dipped from 66% to 60%. Another good sign for high end: “More and more low end consumers are finding it perfectly acceptable to step up to high end brands.” While 23% of drinkers drink low end beer exclusively, 36% of those “low end” drinkers are “perfectly comfortable” drinking both high end and low end (recall Constellation includes premium brands with “low end” in its nomenclature). Meanwhile, 37% of drinkers are “loyal to the high end.”
Young consumers are going high end in a hurry. For drinkers 21-29, 52% of their (self-reported) consumption was high end 2 yrs ago. But now it’s 69%. That’s a big jump. For those 25-34, it went from 52% to 64%. What’s more, every income group is increasing % of their servings in high end. Those making over $100K jumped from 52% to 62%. But 2d biggest gain among those making less than $35,000; hi end jumped from 33 to 41% of consumption. Given these increasing preferences for high end beers across age and income demographics, high end beers will be “cornerstone of total beer industry growth,” concluded Bruce.