There are many benefits to choosing non-alcoholic beers instead of alcoholic beers, with one of these factors being the potential price saving.
Drinkers who may be investigating the non-alcoholic drinks market for the first time may actually notice that there is not always a great saving to be had. This can come as somewhat as a surprise to new drinkers, who assume they will avoid paying the associated alcohol tax.
However, there are a few reasons to justify the lack of price difference between the two categories of drinks.
Brewing non-alcoholic beers takes longer and more complex
We’ve previously written about the different methods in which non-alcoholic beers are made.
In short, non-alcoholic beers are generally made my producing alcoholic beers – as usual – before adding an additional step to remove the alcohol from the product.
Yet, even if this method is not used, specialise ingredients, or slower processing methods are utilised to limit alcohol production during brewing.
And anybody with just a small amount of business acumen will know; time equals money.
So, you might not be paying all of the tax associated with alcoholic drinks, but you are still paying for a longer manufacturing time.
Supply and demand
Without turning this article into a business essay, another factor that contributes to similar pricing between alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks is the quantities that are produced.
Alcoholic drinks are a big industry, yet non alcoholic and low alcoholic drinks are relatively new to the market.
This means that the demand to produce non-alcoholic beers in the same quantities as alcoholic beer is not the same.
Because breweries are producing non-alcoholic beers in smaller quantities, this increases the net cost per drink, which is passed on to consumers such as me and you.
Cost of ingredients
If you go out to any pub or restaurant, you have plenty of options for non-alcoholic alternatives. You could choose a range of soft drinks such as coke, lemonade, tonic water or fruit juices for example.
Therefore, if you want to convince consumers to try an alternative to these options, you need to produce a high quality, great tasting drink.
Alcoholic beers somewhat rely on alcohol to give consumers the taste they expect. However, as you remove alcohol, the lack of flavour and aroma is generally missing from non-alcoholic beers.
To compensate, brewers are using a whole host of botanicals to replicate and differentiate from the alcoholic versions.
Using ingredients such as vanilla and saffron are expensive, a lot more so than that of alcohol.
These expensive botanicals are another reason why your non-alcoholic beers are more expensive than you would expect!
Marketing and advertising
As alcoholic drinks sales remain stagnant, or even start to drop, big businesses such as Diageo and ABinbev have turned to non-alcoholic beers to offer more options to increase sales.
In order for consumers to want to buy non-alcoholic beers, they need to be aware of what is available and where they can buy it.
Telling users this information relies on advertising and marketing.
Of course, advertising and marketing costs money, which is an additional expense to account for, and added to the overall price of your non-alcoholic beer!
If you’ve wanted to buy non-alcoholic beers over the last few years, buying directly from a bar or supermarket shelf has typically been the best option.
Supermarkets must account for delivery to supermarket shelves, and pugs and restaurants have staff and premises costs to account for.
Like most industries, buying online is cheaper and cuts out the middle man, resulting in lower prices.
Fortunately, there are plenty of brands that are specialising in online sales, which hopes to reduce costs further to consumers like you!
Will non-alcoholic beers always be expensive?
Right now, the non-alcoholic beer market is still in its infancy, but is likely to grow over time.
As demand for non-alcoholic beer increases, companies will be able to increase volumes of production and sell more units.
As sales increase, so does competition between wholesalers and distributors. Increased competition generally means lower prices, as brands compete to sell the consumers.
The future for non-alcoholic drinks is exciting, as more variants of non-alcoholic beers enter the market and there are more places to buy them from.
Right now, there are many online retailers that offer great prices and discounts for bulk orders.
To check out the range of non-alcoholic beers available – as well as finding new customer offers, check out the below list of retailers!