BlueWeave Consulting, a leading strategic consulting and market research firm, in its recent study, expects GCC non-alcoholic beer market to grow at a CAGR of 7.25% during the forecast period between 2023 and 2029. Major growth factors of GCC non-alcoholic beer market include increasing awareness of the health benefits of non-alcoholic beer, particularly its polyphenols, such as polyphenol xanthohumol, which have been linked to several cardiovascular health benefits. Additionally, the rising incidence of cardiovascular ailments in the GCC region has further contributed to the demand for non-alcoholic beer. The market expansion is also fueled by changing consumer preferences, especially among millennials and working women, who are increasingly opting for healthier alternatives. As the income levels and living standards of consumers in the region have improved, the per capita spending on high-quality and premium products, including non-alcoholic beverages, has also risen. To cater to the changing consumer tastes and preferences, many major non-alcoholic beer manufacturers globally are introducing new flavors and textures in the GCC region. Major companies, such as Lyre’s and Heineken N.V., are also adding malted beverages to their product categories to align with the traditional culture and beliefs of Gulf country consumers. Another contributing factor to the growth in demand for non-alcoholic beer is the increasing number of expatriates in countries such as the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar. As alcohol consumption is prohibited in several GCC countries, expatriates who are used to drinking alcohol may find it challenging to comply with these regulations and may opt for non-alcoholic beer instead. Overall, the restrictions on alcohol consumption in the region are driving the sales of non-alcoholic beer. However, non-alcoholic beer can be more expensive than traditional beer which is anticipated to restrain the overall market growth.
GCC Non-Alcoholic Beer Market – Overview
Non-alcoholic beer, which contains a maximum of 2.8% ethyl alcohol by volume, is a popular substitute for alcoholic drinks. Studies show that it can produce the same feelings as regular beer, with variations such as IPA, malt, and wheat. Apart from being a refreshing beverage, it also has several health benefits such as reducing the risk of heart disease, promoting bone growth, and aiding sleep. It is particularly recommended for groups such as pregnant women, people with liver and cardiovascular diseases, athletes, and those on medication. Non-alcoholic beer is made through the fermentation process of hops, malt, yeast, and water, producing a range of flavors. Its availability in many places has led to a decrease in the consumption of alcoholic beverages. Increasing non-alcoholic beer consumption in the GCC countries is anticipated to generate opportunities for other major players to penetrate the market. Additionally, hypermarket and supermarket chains such as LULU Hypermarket and Spinneys have begun to acquire substantial stocks of non-alcoholic beer to meet the rising demand in the UAE and Saudi Arabia. Therefore, the expected growth in the availability of non-alcoholic beer in various brick-and-mortar and online retail stores is predicted to drive market expansion in the GCC region in the years ahead.
Impact of COVID-19 on GCC Non-Alcoholic Beer Market
COVID-19 had a detrimental impact on GCC non-alcoholic beer market. The lockdowns and restrictions implemented by governments have affected the production and supply chain of non-alcoholic beer. The closure of bars and restaurants resulted in a decrease in sales of non-alcoholic beer. However, the demand for non-alcoholic beer has increased in the retail sector due to the closure of bars and restaurants, and people staying at home. The shift in consumer preferences towards healthier options has also boosted the demand for non-alcoholic beer. The market is expected to recover as the restrictions ease, and the demand for non-alcoholic beer is expected to increase in the coming years.
GCC Non-Alcoholic Beer Market – By Packaging
By packaging, GCC non-alcoholic beer market is segmented into Cans, Bottles, and Kegs. The bottle packaging segment holds the highest market share during the forecast period, as it is easily accessible and cheaper to produce. In addition, the abundance of local manufacturers such as Middle East Glass and Saudi Arabia Glass Co. Ltd. in countries like the UAE and Saudi Arabia provides glass bottles at low prices and supports the production of craft beers in the region, contributing to the increasing sales of non-alcoholic beer in glass bottles. Furthermore, consumers prefer glass bottles for storage purposes because they are able to preserve the taste and freshness of the product for an extended period of time. Additionally, glass bottles are recyclable, which reduces production costs and provides added advantages. Therefore, these factors suggest that glass bottles are more widely accepted for packaging non-alcoholic beers than other types of packaging.
Major players operating in GCC non-alcoholic beer market include Heineken, Budweiser Prohibition Brew, Bavaria, Guinness Malta, Barbican, Malt Star, Moussy, Jupiler, Holsten Zero, Carlton Zero, Free Damm, and Cobra Zero. To further enhance their market share, these companies employ various strategies, including mergers and acquisitions, partnerships, joint ventures, license agreements, and new product launches.
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