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Indian consumers enjoy beer and wine more than whisky, says survey

YouGov’s latest survey revealed how only 16% urban Indians call whisky their favourite drink, with beer and wine being more popular. 

The findings reportedly showed that beer and wine was more popular with more than half of the respondents (56% and 55%, respectively) and roughly a quarter (24% and 22%, respectively) called it their favourite alcoholic beverage.

Back in 2020, the IWSR, reported that India is the largest consumer of whisky in the world, about three times higher than the US, which is the second-largest consumer.

However, times are changing and the YouGov survey shows that growth in the wine category across India is being driven by Indian women, giving rise to the notion that demographic gender, age and status still play a huge role in drinks choice and brand loyalty wit there being flexibility for new drinks brands entering the Indian marketplace.

The findings also showed how whisky continues to remain popular among Indian males, especially GenX respondents while beer dominates as the drink of choice for younger adults (GenZ & millennials).

According to the survey, brand loyalty is also higher among beer and wine lovers compared to those who drink whisky.

Deepa Bhatia, general manager, YouGov India, said:  “We see consumers more willing to switch brands and have lower loyalty to a favourite brands possibly due to pandemic-related constraints, which not only reduced social opportunities to drink outside of home but also the easy availability of preferred brands. With consumers seeking newer experiences, it is imperative to understand the changing perceptions around drinks instead of relying on old wisdom.”

According to Bhatia, “in order to win in the long term, whisky brands need to woo and win over the newer generation of whisky drinkers, taking a deeper look into their preferences and motivations”.

The report concluded that, instead of chasing cross-drinkers, brands may benefit from engaging with this loyal cohort of drinkers that can guarantee long-term benefit.

It was revealed in the survey that, among whisky lovers who consider themselves brand loyalists, a better sensorial experience may encourage them to try a new brand (35%).

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