The COVID-19 pandemic had a very negative impact on sales of energy drinks in Italy during 2020. In particular, the strict national quarantine lockdown that was in effect for eight weeks between 10 March and 8 May lead to demand for energy drinks plummeting as consumers were only allowed to leave home to purchase essential groceries and all social gatherings were forbidden in an effort to curb the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
The strict national quarantine lockdown that was in place in Italy between 10 March and 8 May 2020 had a devastating impact on on-trade sales of energy drinks over the course of the year. Exacerbating the slump seen in sales of energy drinks over the course of the year was the extension of the mandated closure of all of the country’s nightclubs from the end of the first quarantine lockdown on 8 May until 14 July, while the general reluctance among consumers to spend their nights partying in clubs and bars due to fears of spreading or catching the COVID-19 virus continued to suppress sales even after nightclubs were allowed to open.
The imperative to reduce sugar content remained a highly salient topic across all categories of soft drinks during 2020. Indeed, the increasing interest in the healthier products become a major issue in all categories of soft drinks in Italy during the year as the COVID-19 pandemic sharpened the focus of Italian consumers on strengthening their immunity and improving the general health via improvements in their daily diets, including healthier beverages.
Major sports and cultural events such as concerts and music festivals usually provide the optimum arena for the marketing of major energy drinks brands such as Red Bull, with the brand a regular sponsor of motorsports and extreme sports events and rock music and electronic music festivals in particular. However, with the majority of such events cancelled or postponed during 2020, the brand struggled to maintain its strong focus on maintaining a strong profile among consumers via the sponsorship of such events.
2021 is expected to see retail sales of energy drinks gain strong momentum as consumers will want to return to their pre-COVID-19 consumption habits, although many are likely to remain reluctant to spend their evenings dancing in nightclubs and late-night bars due to the lingering fear of the COVID-19 virus. Furthermore, the economic recession is expected to discourage many Italians from spending money outside of the home.
One of the major obstacles to stronger growth in sales of energy drinks over the forecast period is expected to be the rising levels of competition coming from other non-cola carbonates. Many of the products in this category are primarily consumed as mixers for alcoholic drinks.
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This report originates from Passport, our Energy Drinks research and analysis database.
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