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What Millennials want.

There's a new generation in town, the Millennials, and a recent study by The Nielsen Company shows they want both choice and "an experience" when they drink.

As a group of 70 million consumers, the 21- to 30-year-old Millennial Generation outnumbers Generation X and nearly matches the 77 million strong Baby Boom Generation. The good news is that this powerful demographic likes to drink with friends at bars and restaurants, the Nielsen study finds, more so than previous generations.

The better news, and the growth opportunity for the keen operator, is that Millennials want more choice, more education and more premium selection as part of their drink experience. Greater than half their vodka needs are met with premium or ultra-premium brands, for instance, two-thirds more than other groups. Craft beers make up 15 percent of Millennial beer spending and imports account for another 28 percent, both nearly twice that of other generations.

With choice comes the need for education, too; fully a third are interested in learning more about wine. When Millennials buy wine, more than half of them go red, unlike other groups, which typically opt for white. Cabernet, pinot noir and chardonnay are most popular among this demographic.

Millennials prefer beer; 83 percent of their alcohol consumption is beer, at least for now. Millennials are switching their allegiance from beer to wine and spirits even faster than the population at large; their beer spending as a slice of total alcohol sales has shrunk 12 percent, the study reports, twice the speed of older generations.
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Title Annotation:DRINK CULTURE
Date:Mar 1, 2008
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