Industry should value mature drinkers

Retailers and marketers should not overlook older wine drinkers, Wine Intelligence has warned.

The average age of a regular wine drinker is 48, with those aged 55 and over making up 37% of the market, according to chief executive Lulie Halstead. She

said older drinkers can have an impact on the drinking habits of under-30s – usually seen as a key target market.

“Their key influences are their parents or older work colleagues – people from the previous generation they look to when establishing their drinking patterns,” said Halstead. “The key message from Wine Intelligence is don’t forget our more experienced and older drinkers – they are still incredibly important, particularly in established markets such as the UK.”?Speaking at the Global Wine Conf­erence, Judith kleine Holthaus of the Future Foundation noted that the majority of Britons do not feel old until their late 60s, and that at 80, 20% still do not feel old.

“There has really been a shift in terms of the idea that they want to stay younger for longer,” she said. “We live with the idea of the Madonnas and Sharon Stones.” Holthaus said consumers feel they can gain some control over their health by choosing carefully what they eat and drink – which she believed the wine trade could tap into.