Liquid Thinking

The Cabinet Top Trends for 2023

2022 is old news. What do brands need to know for 2023?

22nd December 2021

Alongside panicked Christmas shoppers and made-for-TV festive rom coms, December always brings with it a plethora of trend pieces, telling us what we’ll wear, watch, eat and drink in the year ahead. Boring. With 2022 nearly upon us, we’re instead looking ahead to 2023 to ask what will happen tomorrow, that brands need to plan for today.

Biodegradable packaging as standard

By 2023, consumers will be flat out intolerant of brands not pulling their weight when it comes to the environment. Sustainable production methods are all well and good, but really, what consumers notice most when it comes to waste is packaging. Mountains and mountains of packaging. In 2023, biodegradable packaging won’t be the preserve of the select few, it will be as standard. Foil coffee pods? A thing of the past. Plastic neck seals? Gone.

Sensory non-alcohol

We can all pretend that we drink alcohol purely for the taste, but that would be a lie. Consumers around the world, of course drink for the buzz it gives them too. And this has been an area that, for all its advances in flavour and mouthfeel, non-alc spirits just haven’t convincingly replicated. Yet. Yes, there are brands that are already working on this. We’re looking at you Sentia Spirit and Dhos Free Gin. But in 2023, as functionality comes to the fore, expect it be a key consideration of any new brand coming to market.

Health-enhancing soft drinks

A wave of health-conscious imbibing has been spurred on by the pandemic. And as the pandemic isn’t slowing, neither is the wave. By 2023, it’s likely we’ll still be living with some form of virus – help. Whether it’s under control or not by then is immaterial to the lasting effects it has had, and will continue to have on our collective psyche. We all now worry about, and are aware of, illness more than ever before. From waters pimped-up with vitamins, sleep aids, collagen, and ashwagandha, to immunity boosting drinks with CBD, vitamins, Omega-3 fatty acids, milk thistle, ginger, and turmeric, expect brands to focus on, and lead with, their health boosting claims. And expect better-for-your versions to emerge across a broader spectrum of drinks categories.

Sleep aids

On that note, we’re all a bit frazzled, are we not? Those who are able to ignore the news, actually find home arrest to be a relaxing step-back from the social anxiety that frequents their usual lives, and have managed to keep their jobs, will surely be frazzled by the sheer pressure to subsequentially ‘get out there’. Brace yourself for the sheer number of social engagements coming your way for summer 2022. So we ask, has anyone actually had a good night’s sleep these past two years? The market for sleep aids has been booming with sleep sodas, sleep seltzers, probiotic shots and more all spiked with sleep-enhancing hormones and herbs. Expect more, available more easily, across more drinks categories than ever before. In short, expect them to become more mainstream.

Celeb-owned soft drinks

Owning an alcohol brand is sexy. Owning an alcohol brand is what you should be doing if you’re any self-respecting celebrity, with a GDP’s worth of disposable income. But a soft drink? Nah. A soft drink just doesn’t have the same cache. Which is kind of weird really, considering the massive shift to more mindful drinking, designer kombuchas, and pastel-hued canned waters we’ve witnessed over the past few years. Thank goodness then for Blake Lively, a true pioneer, for bravely leading the way with her recent launch of the Betty Buzz line of mixers. As imbibers continue to moderate, other celebs will be seeing dollar signs when they scan the soft drinks shelves soon enough. Our vote is for a plethora of CBD waters.

Potato milk

We’ve milked everything but the proverbial cow, in our search for dairy alternatives. Not a nut, oat, or pulse is safe. But move over almond, and see you later oat milk, in 2022 we’ll be drinking potato milk. From February 2022, middle class shoppers the length and breadth of Blighty will be able to get their hands of the stuff, courtesy of Waitrose. Dug Potato Milk is being billed as a vegan-friendly, low fat, low sugar, eco alternative to the alternatives. Expect other brands and stockists to gradually follow suit. But will consumers find the thought of a potato milk as appetising? They’ll at least give it a go.

Full strength/ low calorie booze

Following on from full strength alcohol, zero strength alcohol, and now mid-strength alcohol, comes full-strength but low-calorie alcohol. Or at least, so says us. Like its predecessors, this new genre of booze is governed by the continuing desire of consumers to have their cake and eat it. I mean, moderate. The pursuit of healthier alternatives that don’t compromise on taste will create a burgeoning market for alcohol concentrates in 2022. Step forward products such as Portobello Road Distillery’s Temperance (offered at 4.2% ABV or 0.4% ABV when mixed) Cotswolds Dry Gin Essence (bottled at 46% ABV but designed to be used in 5ml serves) and Quarter G/N which is used in the same quantities as full strength gin, but is just 12% ABV. However in 2023, expect a new genre of full strength products to make claims about being significantly lower in calories, while offering the same taste. And after the year 2022 is shaping up to be, we’re going to need it.

Interested in finding out more about what this might mean for you and your business?

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