MARKET MONITOR A graphic guide to the off-trade

21 September, 2007

Category domination by percentage value sales

The on-trade continues to dominate the picture when it comes to some of the big blockbuster categories, making the off-trade's contribution to beer, cider and imported whiskey look rather puny.

But a closer examination of the Nielsen data reveals a slightly different picture. Prices are dearer in the on-trade to cover its higher cost base, and the figures for sales volume show

the take-home market

doing somewhat better than the sales value chart

suggests.

Take ale. The off-trade only claims 10 per cent of sales, but accounts for 18 per cent of volumes. This anomaly is down to the relative cheapness of beer in the off-trade.

The picture is even more extreme in cider. Bar prices ensure that the on-trade claims 71 per cent of sales value from the sector - yet most cider purchases happen in the off-trade. By volume, the take-home market has a 56 per cent share.

In light wine (that is everything except sparkling, fortified and low-alcohol products), the off-trade is the undisputed winner whichever measure is used. It claims a 61 per cent share of the money spent by British consumers, and 84 per cent of the actual liquid that is sold.




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Reasons to be cheerful

I would like to think my outlook on things is generally optimistic. Perhaps that’s a natural consequence of working with something designed to give pleasure. But recently it has become increasingly difficult to ignore a creeping sense of negativity pervading the British wine trade.

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