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Alcoholic beverages that go beyond beer

Consumers are embracing lower-calorie beverages lighter in taste than beer

Alcohol saw significant retail sales increases during COVID, and the trend shows no signs of stopping even as restaurants and bars begin resuming normal service.

Data from research firm Nielsen shows that dollar sales of hard seltzer were up 176.5%, to about $3.9 billion, at retail stores (grocery, convenience and liquor stores — excluding restaurants and bars) in the 52 weeks ending Nov. 14, compared with the year-ago, 52-week span. That’s on top of a 203.8% increase in the 2019 period.

Nielsen reported that wine sales were up 16.1% in 2021, to about $20.5 billion, in the 52 weeks ending Nov. 14, compared to the year-ago span. Beer sales, meanwhile, were up 8% in the most recent 52 weeks, to $39.95 billion.

And while beer may hold a strong first-place when it comes to alcohol sales (especially as summer approaches), there are plenty of new companies targeting the younger consumer who wants a lower-calorie option to beer with a fruiter flavor. Here are some of the newest products in that category.

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