As was the case for all categories of alcoholic drinks, sales of spirits through the on-trade channel were hard hit by COVID-19 in 2020 as the lockdown resulted in the closure of bars, restaurants, and other foodservice outlets. The alcohol ban/restrictions in Manilla further damaged sales providing consumers with fewer opportunities to buy spirits.
While the Philippines saw growing interest in imported spirits over the review period from players such as Diageo Philippines and Pernod Ricard Philippines, it was local players such as Ginebra San Miguel and Tanduay Distillers Inc which showed greater resilience in 2021. These local producers were focused on enhancing their supply and distribution chains and implementing above-the-line and below-the-line marketing in 2021, which helped Ginebra San Miguel bolster the performance of its flagship brand in Dutch gin as well as its Vino Kulafu brand of aniseed-flavoured spirits.
While on-trade establishments did not see a full return to normal operations in 2021, the easing of restrictions nonetheless enabled categories such as cognac, gin, and rum to register growth in the on-trade channel. While there were some consumers who continued to isolate at home there was greater confidence in dining out thanks to the Philippines vaccination rollout.
Rising vaccination rates, the easing of restrictions, and an anticipated economic recovery are all expected to help fuel growth in spirits over the forecast period. While these external factors are fundamental to the category’s growth, the continued efforts from the leading players to deliver operational efficiencies, wider distribution, and an increase in marketing activities are also likely to be key factors in driving category growth.
While off-trade volume sales remained relatively stable during the pandemic – aside from a dip during the ban on alcohol sales – the on-trade suffered heavy losses, with only a partial recovery seen in 2021. Nonetheless, with the easing of restrictions, including the reopening of the country’s borders to international tourists in early 2022, the on-trade channel should continue to grow.
While Emperador Distillers, Ginebra San Miguel, and Tanduay Distillers pride themselves on their robust distribution in other grocery retailers, e-commerce is becoming increasingly popular with consumers who appreciate the convenience and safety of shopping online. To help tap into this the leading players are likely to focus on collaborating with popular e-commerce sites to deliver growth, with the leading players already having a presence on Lazada and Shopee.
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Understand the latest market trends and future growth opportunities for the Spirits industry in Philippines 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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