MINDFUL & KIND - Cuisine Magazine - From New Zealand to the World
Social expectations of moderation is one motivation behind the rise of lower- and no-alcohol drinks (known colloquially as low:no). For some it’s expressed as drinking better, less frequently; for others, it has manifested as drinking low:no. Uptake in wine has lagged behind beer, but Richard Lee, Marketing Manager of NZ Lighter Wines (a research project jointly funded by NZ Winegrowers, MPI and wineries over seven years), points out that the past five years saw low:no sales accelerating and growing faster than organic wine. For some buyers, it overlaps with the health motivations for organics but focuses on reducing alcohol intake and calories. Dr David Jordan, who manages the project, believes the adoption of organics will play out in low:no wines too, in time – it does not threaten the organic sector. His research shows New Zealand’s uptake is world- leading, with 6-7% of New Zealand sauvignon blanc, pinot gris and rosé sold domestically being low:no. Charlotte Read, general manager of marketing at New Zealand Winegrowers, believes that the conversation and research into lighter wines reflects the industry’s focus to be more consumer centric and adapt to health and wellness trends. She says that investing in innovation is one way to ensure we stay ahead of the curve. It allows New Zealand wineries to keep producing wines people want to buy and keeps our industry growing for a sustainable future.