Craft beer can weather COVID-19 in India by incorporating immunity-boosting ingredients, says GlobalData

Due to the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak, the 2023 forecast for the beer and cider category in India has been revised down from $12.9bn to $10.7bn – a devaluation of $2.2bn. As manufacturers across food and beverage categories in the country are already introducing products with ‘immunity-boosting’ properties, Indian craft beer brands should add functional ingredients such as gooseberry, neem, turmeric, basil, black pepper, ginger and herbs that are associated with home remedies for cold and flu symptoms to increase their attraction to customers concerned about ill health, as well as bottle their offerings for sale in the retail channel, says GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

Kshama Raj, Consumer Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “Craft beer companies often experiment with flavors, nutritional content and water composition. Adding functional ingredients can be a differentiating, yet familiar feature for beer drinkers in India. This is already the case in Japan, where a Ryukakusan Tazawako-branded wheat beer claims to alleviate cough symptoms due to the added dragon herb. While beer brands must be careful about making health claims as they tend to be heavily regulated in many parts of the world, adding ingredients associated with cold and flu remedies may increase their appeal.”

In India, *21% of consumers drink craft beer, giving rise to bottled craft beer brands such asBira 91, Simba, The White Owl, Kati Patang, Medusa Beer, White Rhino, and Brewbot. With the COVID-19 outbreak seriously hampering on-trade sales, craft breweries should consider bottling their offerings to be sold in the retail channel.  

Raj concludes: “In a ‘new normal’ after the COVID-19 pandemic, **63% of consumers in India would dine at home instead of restaurants and **30% agree they plan to spend more time socializing with friends/family at-home in the foreseeable future. Since breweries and pubs remain closed in India, remodelled craft beer with prominence on immunity-providing ingredients can be perceived as a well-timed alternative to regular beers, especially while unwinding during the weekends, watching sports, or gaming with friends and family.”

*Source: GlobalData 2019 Q4 global consumer survey

**Source: GlobalData 2020 Coronavirus (COVID-19) Recovery Consumer Survey Results: Week 2 (July 1) – India – combined results of slightly more and significantly more than before

More Media