NoLo: ZAG Drinks launches campaign for Low and No alcohol alternatives
While the number of adults favouring alcohol-free drinks over their usual tipple is significantly on the rise, a study has found that consumers feel that the options available for these in pubs and bars remain disappointingly low. Now, one beverage manufacturer – ZAG Drinks – is campaigning to fix this, asking every bar and pub in the UK to give customers what they want, by offering an extensive non-alcoholic menu by the end of 2024.
In the UK, around 54% of the adult population drink alcohol but according to a YouGov survey conducted in January 2022, just one in three of these now “semi-regularly” consume NoLo products compared to 25% in 2020. This means roughly 11.5 million people are actively drinking no and low alcohol drinks regularly.
A recent poll* revealed over 60% of adults aged 35-44 in the UK would like to see a wider array of alcohol-free and non-alcoholic drinks on offer when socialising. Half of these (49%) were also specifically in favour of restaurants, bars and pubs adding more non-alcoholic options to menus.
Amongst these are Bonnie Hatcher, Fraser Duncan and Jerry Goldberg: the team behind ZAG Drinks. Having seen first-hand that the only non-alcoholic drinks available in bars and restaurants were either full of sugar or sweeteners, disappointing imitations of alcoholic drinks like alcohol-free beer and ‘nosecco’, or water, they set out to fill the gap with their own recipes.
Pioneering a new drinks category – ‘Social Softs’ – the team created ZAG Drinks: low-calorie, non-alcoholic ‘adult soft drinks’, which feature both complex flavour profiles and high-quality natural ingredients. Now, it is taking things a step further, with its new campaign.
Commenting on this need for change, Bonnie Hatcher, Managing Director of ZAG Drinks, said:
“Pubs and restaurants are definitely recognising food preferences – such as vegan and vegetarian – and supporting these with exciting, extensive and considered food menus; however, the same can’t be said for their drinks offering. What’s most astonishing about this is the numbers: surveys have shown that the percentage of people who are following a vegan diet is only 2-3%; this is compared to 32% of pub visits now being non-alcoholic.
“For customers who are not drinking or who are choosing to cut down, their choice is limited and often feels like an after-thought. It’s time to answer the consumer demand for more choice in the NoLo market, and ZAG is on a mission to improve the variety and excitement of non-alcoholic drinks menus across the country to match the growing number of non-drinkers, and support pubs with incremental sales from non-drinkers.”
ZAG is calling for the hospitality industry – and beverage manufacturers themselves – to look beyond energy drinks and fizzy drinks, which are often full of sugar, caffeine, or sweeteners; and alcohol-free reproductions.
Its own recipe is specifically made to be the perfect refreshment for those not drinking, cutting back, or enjoying a social occasion, by boasting a blend of green tea, lime, lemon, mint, kombucha and natural hemp flavouring. What’s more, with demand showing no signs of slowing, ZAG Drinks is set to introduce a new product this November bringing another blend of sophisticated flavours to the table.
For ZAG Drinks, the proof is in the pubs themselves: Brunning and Price have already stocked ZAG Drinks across several of its establishments across the country and has seen happy customers as a result. Now, it’s lending its support to the ZAG Drinks campaign, hoping that other pubs follow its lead and offer extensive non-alcoholic menus.
Beth Mooney, Operations Support for Brunning and Price, said:
“Everyone deserves to be excited by the selection of drinks when they go out, no matter if they are drinking alcohol or not. We know first-hand just how much pubs mean to local communities across the country, yet many are struggling to serve customer’s needs – particularly those having a non-alcoholic visit.
“We’re delighted to be able to address that with a varied non-alcoholic offering, which ZAG has very much championed across several of our venues. We call on other pubs, clubs and bars to join us in supporting this mission to offer better non-alcoholic options by the end of 2024. It’s certainly been working for us!”
If you are a pub, club or bar interested in extending your NoLo options, visit ZAG’s website to find out more about their mission and how to create a balanced menu: zagdrinks.com.
* OnePoll Survey of 2,000 people commissioned by ZAG Drinks