Non-alcoholic beer has become increasingly popular in Ireland in recent years, and this trend is set to continue in 2022, according to Drinks Ireland|Beer, which represents Irish beer makers.
The array of non-alcoholic beers now available offer consumers great tasting alternatives if they’re driving, cutting back or simply looking to try something new, the group said.
While popular all year round, non-alcoholic beers are particularly in-demand among beer lovers during Dry January.
The latest data from Drinks Ireland|Beer estimates that non-alcoholic beer sales in Ireland grew by 129% between 2017 and 2020, from 1.79 million to 4.12 million litres.
Meanwhile, the market share grew by 175% during this time, from 0.4% in 2017 to 1.1% in 2020.
Drinks Ireland|Beer says that beer sales across the board were heavily impacted by COVID-19 and the closure of hospitality venues. While it anticipates that non-alcoholic beer sales dropped slightly in 2021, they remained strong. It expects that the category maintained its growing market share.
Jonathan McDade, director of Drinks Ireland|Beer commented,“There has never been more choice for beer drinkers in Ireland, with a range of new products from emerging and existing producers hitting the market in recent years.
"One major trend we’ve seen is the emergence of non-alcoholic beer, with an array of great tasting alternatives from Irish beer makers," he said.
"These products have proven particularly popular as they retain the great taste Irish beer is known for, despite containing no alcohol," McDaid added.
"We see from the latest international data that the category is set to continue growing globally in the coming years, and we expect this to be reflected here in Ireland too, as non-alcoholic beer goes from strength to strength,” he concluded.