Booze in a Can

Menstuff® has compiled the following information on the liquor industry's plow to package liquor like beer and soft-drinks

Beer-Can Sized Liquor Drinks Coming

Canned liquor-based beverages featuring products like Captain Morgan rum, Smirnoff vodka, and Seagram's whiskey have passed test-marketing with flying colors and could soon be coming to a liquor outlet, convenience store, or gas station near you.

Ad Age reported Sept. 18 that liquor company Diageo is touting new products like Captain Morgan and Coke and Smirnoff Vodka and Lemon-Lime Soda, which have the same alcohol content (about 5 percent) as beer and are packaged in 12-ounce cans like beer or soda. Retailers in Florida test markets said the products are selling well. Diageo said it plans to expand sales and also introduce more canned products.

"We see [ready-to-drink cocktails] as an untapped category," a Diageo spokesperson said. "We're anxious to see how consumers react to them." Similar products featuring Jim Beam whisky are already a hit in countries like Australia.

Experts say that the new drinks could cut into the "portability" advantage now enjoyed by beer, but objections are likely from health advocates, who already complain that so-called "alcopop" drinks appeal to underage drinkers.

"It extends the occasions [spirits] can penetrate, and in that way it's a threat to beer," said alcohol-industry consultant Brian Sudano. "It opens up picnics and beaches and even some concessions." On the other hand, he said, the ready-made drinks also could cannibalize sales of unmixed spirits.


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