RTDs recorded strong year-on-year growth throughout the review period, while many other alcoholic drink categories struggled. The trend towards ienomi remains strong amongst consumers looking to save money, and economy-priced RTDs fit busy modern lifestyles and preferences for cocooning – RTDs are mostly consumed with meals as shokuchu-shu.
In June 2017, an amendment was made to Japan’s liquor tax in an effort to restrain excess discounting at store-based retailers, leading to a significant rise in beer prices. The amendment enhanced the price advantage of RTDs and boosted consumer migration from economy beer.
Suntory Spirits Ltd strengthened its leading position in RTDs/high-strength premixes in 2017, raising its volume share to over 39%. The company’s core brand, -196C Strong Zero, which has an 8% ABV, is intended for more experienced drinkers and the taste is designed to match meals, with subtler, less intrusive fruit flavours, such as lemon and grapefruit.
Ranked third in RTDs/high-strength premixes in 2017, Asahi Breweries Ltd was the fastest-growing major player in RTDs/high-strength premixes during the year, thanks largely to the renewal of Asahi Mogitate, a high-alcohol RTD with juice made from fruit picked within 24 hours of production. The brand continued to appeal to both male and female consumers, while most high-alcohol RTDs are primarily consumed by male drinkers.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Alcoholic Drinks market research database.