Young Aussie drinkers are becoming increasingly more discerning, with new research showing they not only want variety, but are also overwhelming more likely to buy a product if it’s locally made and ‘hand-crafted’.
The findings, from a survey conducted by leading fruit winery and brewer, Rebello based in Victoria, found 85% per cent of respondents (of which 70% were between the ages of 20 and 35) said they are more likely to buy products if they know they are locally made.
A whopping 96% said they were more likely to purchase a product if it’s made with real, local fruit rather than concentrates and flavours – with the main motivation being to support local farmers, and because it’s healthier and natural.
And, they’re prepared to pay more for it – with 92% saying they would pay slightly more for a product hand-crafted by a brewer, and made using quality ingredients.
The findings certainly back Rebello’s own business figures. It has seen an 880% growth alone in the first year after launching its 100% real fruit cider range – Cheeky Rascal Cider – which incorporates varietals using strawberries, raspberries and blueberries from the family farm, Sunny Ridge, on the Mornington Peninsula.
Its mulled cider which utilises a pyramid bag usually used for tea, packed with cinnamon, star anise, orange, clove, nutmeg, vanilla bean and all spice berry, and partnered with its Cheeky Rascal apple or pear cider (using seasonal fruit from Victoria), has seen similar success since its release just weeks ago.
Rebello’s CEO Ruth Gallace says the initial production run of 10,000 cases pre-sold and they’re struggling to keep up with demand.
“Retailers are now trying to get their hands on stock as we’re struggling to keep up, because it was launched as a limited edition.”
She says it’s humbling to see there are increasingly people out there who do really like to try innovative Australian products, and support local farmers, growers, producers and winemakers.
“We certainly didn’t expect the phenomenal success we’ve seen from our mulled cider, but the craft cider market is becoming crowded, so this proves how a simple innovative idea, made locally with quality products, can really take off.”
Gallace says the research findings validate what their customers are saying, that they want quality, local products – and while cider generally is increasingly popular, it’s important for small producers to drive enough new product to capture that consumer interest.
“We’re always brainstorming with our senior winemaker and brewer and asking consumers what they’d like to see in regards to varieties. It’s a simple recipe, but it’s working, so we’re hoping we can continue to surprise and excite the market.”