After a further decline in demand in 2020 due to the closure of on-trade channels and pandemic-related quarantines that affected Chile for most of the year, spirits recorded exceptional growth in 2021, as the country introduced its fourth vaccination campaign, resulting in one of the highest vaccinated populations in the world.
While overall demand for spirits was positively impacted by a combination of factors, the category recorded even higher total current value growth in 2021. Smaller categories that had experienced notable declines earlier in the review period such as tequila and vodka, enjoyed an upturn in sales, supported by the emergence of premium brands, with the likes of Don Julio (Premium Brands Chile SPA) and Olmeca (Pernod Ricard Chile SA) recording major jumps in volume terms, while relative newcomer Cazadores (Bacardi-Martini Chile SA) also experienced a boost to sales, albeit from a low comparative base.
A common issue throughout 2021 for most companies revolved around problems with the delivery of supplies to continue production and/or importing problems due to delays linked to the fallout of the pandemic. In a year where imports were the main products sold in spirits, overall sales could have been higher were it not for these challenges.
Chile regained a semblance of normality during 2021 while the pandemic remained in circulation. Following the strong cash injection, local consumers wanted to leave their homes and take advantage of improved sanitary conditions, but the spectrum of inflation looms on the horizon and the Chilean Central Bank has had to adjust its interest rates to address an overheated economy.
Chileans’ quest to try new cocktails and flavours will continue to favour gin and bitters, with this trend likely to emerge in other spirits over the forecast period, as consumers search for interesting new experiences. As bitters are used for spritzer cocktails (also pushing up sales of sparkling wine), leading brands Aperol and Ramazzotti are expected to benefit, with the latter gaining significant volume share in 2021.
The pandemic led to prolonged home seclusion, allowing many consumers to take the time to indulge in new hobbies or learn new skills, albeit some through virtual sessions such as attending online cocktail or cooking classes, or simply experimenting with new drinks and flavours as they searched for ways to be creative and stay productive during a time of uncertainty. Once the lockdowns started to be lifted, these new consumption trends translated to the on-trade channel once restaurants and bars opened.
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Understand the latest market trends and future growth opportunities for the Spirits industry in Chile with research from Euromonitor International's team of in-country analysts – experts by industry and geographic specialisation.
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This is the aggregation of whisk(e)y, brandy and Cognac, white spirits, rum, tequila, liqueurs and other spirits.See All of Our Definitions
This report originates from Passport, our Spirits research and analysis database.
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