DrinkWise is teaming up with Endeavour Group to trial dedicated zero, low and mid-strength sections, front and centre in selected Dan Murphy’s and BWS stores. There will also be in-store messaging to help encourage zero/low/mid strength alcohol options.
The move follows DrinkWise research – which surveyed 3000 Australians – that revealed there is still a perceived stigma around drinking less, with 35% of those aged 18-44 years admitting they would hide the fact they’re not drinking alcohol or drinking lower strength products from the people they’re with.
The trial is designed to help them reduce their consumption and showcase the range, sophistication and increasing adoption of lower strength alcohol products in Australia.
The study found that while drinking alcohol during COVID has remained the same or decreased for the majority of Australians, 31% of risky drinkers have increased their alcohol consumption since the start of the pandemic, and this is more likely to be younger people aged 18-44 years.
However, zero, low and mid-strength alcohol options are making a difference, with a third of Australians (32%) who have reduced their alcohol consumption using low and non-alcoholic options to cut back.
Trial begins in Queensland BWS store
The Australian first pilot program, with a purpose-designed BWS store, will begin in Queensland, before being rolled out in other states.
DrinkWise CEO, Simon Strahan says research shows younger people are considerably more likely to want to reduce their alcohol consumption.
“Almost 6-out-of-10 alcohol drinkers aged 18-to-24 years old are looking to cut down their alcohol consumption. This new DrinkWise research highlights the positive impact that zero, low and mid strength products can have in helping to reduce alcohol consumption, which is why we’re working with Dan Murphy’s and BWS liquor stores to raise awareness of, and improve access to, lower strength and zero alcohol products,” he said.
Younger people (18-44 years) are twice as likely to consume lower and zero alcohol options than people aged 45+ years.
“We are seeing an acceleration in the recent trend of customers seeking more ways to moderate their drinking, and this has corresponded with a steady rise in the number of people purchasing lower and zero alcohol options,” said Steve Donohue, CEO & Managing Director, Endeavour Group. “We couldn’t be prouder to help raise awareness of these low-alcohol alternatives in partnership with DrinkWise, and to assist our customers to make responsible choices.”
General Practitioner Dr Matt Hargreaves added: “It’s heartening to see the majority of Australians drinking less during COVID-19, but sadly one in three (31%) risky drinkers have increased their alcohol intake in recent months. As a doctor who
sees patients wanting to cut back on their alcohol consumption, I commend DrinkWise and Endeavour Group for raising awareness and improving access to lower strength and zero alcohol products,”
Risky drinkers are classified as people who consume 10 or more standard drinks a week or more than four standard drinks during a single day.
This targeted and strategic rollout aligns to the DrinkWise study, which indicated Queenslanders are significantly more likely to be drinking alcohol at risky levels than the nation’s average (34% vs 28%). Drinkers in the Sunshine State agreed that providing access to lower strength and zero alcohol products allows consumers to take greater control of their drinking choices (58%).
At Dan Murphy’s and BWS stores, you have to be 18 years of age to buy lower strength and zero alcohol products and customers have their IDs checked if they look under the age of 25 years.