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Looking ahead: Neil Anderson, Kingsland Drinks

Published:  16 August, 2017

The autumn tasting season will be upon us before we know it, as the trade prepares for the run up to the all-important Christmas trading period.

Throughout August, Harpers is running a web series that will include interviews with some of leading voices in the trade, to discover what trends and challenges they’re expecting to face in the latter half of 2017.

We continue our series with Neil Anderson, marketing director at Kingsland Drinks, where the supplier and bottler has been concentrating on expanding on carbonated and fusion trends.

How has the first half of 2017 compared to 2016?

Kingsland has significantly grown in the past two years due to a number of factors. In 2016, our carbonation facility, which produces a super soft fizz, enabled us to expand our offer to retail partners.

Our British Winery was also put into commission allowing us to use our proprietary consumer insight, WinePRO, to develop more innovations in fusion and relevant formats.

Kingsland Drinks is unique as we can offer a complete 360 degree service from importing and bottling to offering leading consumer insight.

With a greater share of wine sold in UK bottled here (anywhere between 65% to 75%), Kingsland continues to play in the total UK wine market (approx. 10% of wine sold comes through Kingsland Drinks).

Our purpose is to continually add value to the UK wine category and to all our customers, so we continue to work on a range of new innovations that we look forward to bringing to market over the next year.

What will be your main focus during this year?

To continue to work with our retailers and customers to help grow their wine category. With WinePRO, we are now looking at two key trend areas: healthier alternatives and also understanding the role of formats, which we look forward to sharing with our key customers from September onwards.

Are there any specific challenges that you’re planning for?

Consumer insight shows that people are looking for more niche and crafted brands that contribute a point of difference to the category, and this is shown through the decline of the larger wine brands sales.

Our challenge is to harness this and ensure that our products are well placed to fulfill this need. Additionally, over 80% of wine is purchased by the over 45s, showing that younger consumers need to be engaged through innovative formats, packaging and products in order to bring them over to the category.

Any specific trends you anticipate?

WinePRO identified that drinking habits are changing, with consumers trying to reduce their alcohol consumption and instead, opting for fewer, but more innovative products.

Fruit flavoured wines have hit the market relatively recently, but have increased their value by 17.5% in the past year alone. When partnered with a lower ABV and an innovative format, the consumer need is fulfilled, so we expect to see sales and NPD’s in this area increase.