Soaring temperatures last week resulted in another week of growth for trade sales as consumers flocked to beer gardens and terraces.
CGA by NielsenIQ’s Drinks Recovery Tracker shows that average sales by value in managed venues across the seven days to Saturday, 13th August, were 9% ahead of the same week in 2019.
In addition, year on year performance ran at +13% at a total drinks level, although this is an inflated figure, bearing in mind that weekly performance in 2021 was down by 5% on pre-Covid levels.
It’s a sturdy weekly performance, and one that operators are hoping can continue to be repeated at this level, in order to get close to record-breaking inflation rates and rising costs.
Cider continued to dominate in the hot weather, with a huge 45% uplift vs 2019. Beer had a good week at +10%. Softs generated 15% growth, but spirits only reached +8%. This was affected by Thursday in particular, with a -16% hit to the category due to the comparison vs A-level results day in 2019. And wine continued to bring up the rear, dropping to 19%, which is the worst result in months.
Looking ahead to the following week, Sunday 14th bounced back to +15%, defying the Saturday dip. Cider was +54% and spirits catapulted to +44%, contributing to an overall robust result before temperatures started to cool. But, A-level results are expected to underpin sales on Thursday and deliver strongly in the spirits category.
Jonathan Jones, CGA by NielsenIQ’s managing director, UK and Ireland, said: “The effects of the second heatwave versus much cooler conditions in 2019 were positive on every day of the week, except Saturday. Consumers flocked to beer gardens and terraces to enjoy temperatures that were much more enjoyable than the blistering heatwave we experienced in July.
“As the spectre of the cost of living crisis continues to escalate and inflation rates shoot up to a 40-year high, it’s welcome news for the on premise.”