After overdoing it during the holidays, many people are focusing on health and wellness in the new year. Some practice Dry January and give up drinking during the month. And more and more people are drinking less or have stopped drinking altogether: sales of non-alcoholic beverages have increased more than 30% last year, according to NielsenIQ data.
Nick Bodkins had a few reasons to quit drinking last year. His wife gave it up because she was in IVF. He also didn’t like how much money he was spending.
“And dry January turned into dry February and dry March,” he said.
Bodkins is drinking now. He just drinks less. And he said that was the case for most of his customers at Beverage, his small chain of non-alcoholic beer, wine and liquor stores in New York.
“For a lot of people, it’s very much about health and wellness. It’s, you know, I think a little more about what I put in my body,” he said.
Young people are leading the no-alcohol and low-alcohol trend. Courtney Schiessl Magrini is the editor of SevenFifty Daily, an alcohol industry magazine. She said the market had grown over the past decade but exploded during the pandemic. Now even well-known brands like Heineken and Lagunitas make non-alcoholic beer.
“We see new products entering the space every day, so there’s no reason to think it’s going to slow down anytime soon,” she said.
Especially, she says, as more bars and restaurants add mocktails to their menus.