Australian cider enjoying strong growth

13 March, 2020 by Andy Young

There is now even more reason to celebrate tomorrow’s inaugural Australian Cider Day, as new data from IRI shows authentic cider made from 100 per cent Australian grown fruit is enjoying strong growth.

Cider Australia launched Australian Cider Day to boost understanding about product origin and cideries and venues across the country are gearing up to celebrate.

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There is now even more reason to cheer, according to Cider Australia President, Sam Reid, who said the IRI data shows the Australian juice segment has grown to more than 10 per cent of the cider category by retail sales value.

The data also showed that Australian cider also grew by 10 per cent over the past 12 months, 13 percentage points ahead of the rest of the cider category.

“It’s the first time we’ve seen cider category data at this level of detail and the results are encouraging for producers who are committed to using apples and pears from Australian orchards”, said Reid. “We’ve felt for a number of years that Australian Craft Cider was a ‘hotspot’ in the cider category which has been under pressure for that last few years, and it’s great to have the data to prove it.”

Reid told TheShout, that he has been trying to get this data for a number of years, to prove that while the overall cider category is in decline, there is some good news, and this will help give retailers and venues the confidence to stock more Australian craft cider.

“I’ve been trying to get this for a number of years, and I have been telling everybody that Australian cider is doing well, but having the data to prove it is critical.

“We also now have the Cider Australia 100 per cent Australian Grown Trust Mark and we’ve got more than 50 producers with this on pack around Australia.

“We are all relatively small of course but we’re working together, calling it out, making noise about it and now with this data and showing that Australian craft cider is a strong category that is engaging with consumers and giving them a connection to the produce, we are hopeful that we will see more shelf space or section in store.

“The source of the fruit should be a key selling point for cider and our mark is a world first, but I’d like to think in years to come we will see a Spanish mark, and Italian mark and a UK mark.”

Reid added that with the data coming out in time for Australian Cider Day, there is a big reason to celebrate.

“We’ve been talking about Australian Cider Day for a number of years, but now we’ve got the trust mark and the data showing how well Australian cider is doing, it’s a good reason to celebrate and unify and everyone behind Australian cider.”

Reid told TheShout that he was hopeful the trust mark and IRI data will give retailers more confidence in the Australian cider category.

“We’ve already got some retailers who are using the branding in their stores and a number of retailers we are working with won’t have ciders that use imported concentrate in their stores.

“So we’d like to see more retailers supporting the initiative and driving awareness and having an Australian craft cider section in store where they can, whether that’s a whole fridge or a whole shelf, or just a section of a shelf, where they can and it makes sense.”

He added: “Whether it’s Australia and international or Australian craft and international craft cider it’s really up everybody to segment how they like. There are some fantastic international ciders coming into Australia and we encourage people, as an industry, to sample those and get an understanding of what cider can be.

“It doesn’t have to be that sweet, fizzy water that some people would know it to be. It can be more interesting, more complex and mature and discerning and fit into a number of different occasions.”