Retailers to uncork holidays with value-priced wines
Affordable in-home dining and entertaining will be the trend this holiday season, and consumers will be more willing to open their wallets for affordable indulgences in wine and spirits to help them celebrate.
A recent survey from Information Resources Inc. revealed that 90% of consumers expected to spend no more than $200 on beer, wine and spirits this holiday season. That’s good news since it’s a 25% increase from the $150 to $175 consumers said they were willing to spend last year.
It also might mean that consumers will be willing to pay a bit more for their wines this holiday season. “Consumers are likely to tread lightly back into higher priced brands,” said IRI’s consulting and innovation president Thom Blischok. Blishok cautioned that consumers looking for deals and sharply priced wines will drive most of the business this season.
As budget-conscious consumers have shifted to value-priced wines, sales of California wines to the U.S. market were up 2% in volume in 2008, according to the Wine Institute.
The under-$5-per-glass bottle and under-$2-per-glass box wines made up nearly 50% of the drug channel dollars for the category, and close to 75% of its volume sales, according to Dan Wandel, SVP and beverage alcohol expert at IRI. “These economy-priced items continue to do well in drug stores, with growth rates that outpace the food outlet,” he said. “Expect these to continue to be strong in this channel for the holidays.”
Wandel said that while such major varietals as chardonnay continue to perform well in the drug channel, retailers can expect strong performance from pinot grigio/pinot gris, pinot noir, red blends/meritage and nonvarietal sangria during the upcoming holidays. “These varietals are growing double-digit this past year,” he said.
Late-stage clinical trial results: MS drug is effective
ALISO VIEJO, Calif. Patients taking an investigational drug for multiple sclerosis fared better than those taking placebo, according to late-stage clinical results presented Friday at a neurology conference.
Avanir Pharmaceuticals said MS patients taking Zenvia (dextromethorphan and quinidine) in 30 mg/10 mg doses experienced a 11.9% greater reduction in pseudobulbar effect – an MS-related condition also known as PBA that causes sudden, uncontrollable episodes of laughter, crying and other emotional outbursts – than those taking placebo in a 12-week phase 3 trial, results of which the company presented at the 3rd World Congress on Controversies in Neurology in Prague, Czech Republic. Patients taking the 20 mg/10 mg dose did not do better than the placebo group.
“PBA represents an area of high, unmet medical need with no FDA-approved treatments currently available,” study presenter and trial steering committee member Daniel Wynn of the Consultants in Neurology Multiple Sclerosis Center stated. “Although the involuntary emotional outbursts of PBA cause considerable impairment for millions of individuals in the United States, it is under-recognized and commonly misdiagnosed.”
New report projects 12.6% increase of probiotics market
NEW YORK The two takeaways from this story are “the [U.S.] market is expected to grow at a rate of almost 14%” and “the early movers in the industry will benefit in terms of market share.”
That about describes the opportunity in a probiotic nutshell.
The rising interest in probiotics can be credited in part to Dannon’s Activia brand, a line of yogurts and yogurt drinks, which has been heavily advertised to the American consumer with the message that not all bacteria is bad for you — and in fact some bacteria taken on a regular basis can impart some pretty significant health benefits. That advertising message — that probiotics can be an important piece in a healthier-for-you diet — has been all the more reinforced as Bayer supports its probiotic Phillips Colon Health, and as Procter & Gamble rolls out its Align probiotic.
And the consumers already are core drug store shoppers. The ratio of women to men in search of a product delivering digestive benefits is about 2-to-1, according to industry experts. When women hit their 30s and 40s, that’s the point in their lives when they’re looking for a strategy in life to help them manage their digestive issues.