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On-trade set for Halloween sales hike

Published:  31 October, 2019

Restaurants, bars and pubs are poised to see sales significantly boosted by Halloween as the fright-night continues to gain traction as a ‘big night out’ for adults.

On 31 October last year average drink sales through restaurants, bars and pubs rose 11% compared with sales on an average Wednesday, according to new figures from CGA based on the last couple of years.

That performance also marked a 22% hike on Halloween 2017, indicating that the event is becoming more significant in Britain's on-trade.

CGA said Halloween spikes spirit sales by 57%, with vodka, liqueurs and speciality drinks being the most popular drinks for spook night.

In contrast, it said beer sales increased by just 2.3%, suggesting that Halloween is a high-tempo occasion where consumers choose shots, bombs and cocktails rather than beer or long drinks.

“Our research reveals that the majority of participants have white-collar jobs and a higher monthly spend on eating and drinking out - £125 compared with the average £107. These are consumers that enter the spirit of Halloween with cash in their pockets – so it’s a great opportunity, particularly for pub and bar operators who get the atmosphere and offer right,” said Rachel Weller, CGA’s strategic initiatives director.

CGA’s consumer research also confirmed the soaring popularity of Halloween as a social event with over one in five (21%) consumers going out for Halloween in 2018 —putting it behind only New Year’s Eve, Christmas Eve and bank holidays as a special drinking-out occasion.