Drinks sales spring back to year-on-year growth

On Premise drinks sales burst back to life in the first full week of March, thanks to milder Spring weather and big sporting occasions.

CGA by NIQ’s Daily Drinks Tracker shows average sales in managed venues in the week to last Saturday (9 March) were 5% ahead of the same week in 2023. It raises hopes for bright Spring and Summer trading after tough trading conditions in January and largely flat sales in February. 


Sales were up year-on-year on six of the seven days of the week. Standouts included Sunday (3 March), when the Manchester football derby helped drive growth to +13%. Midweek matches—plus favourable weather comparatives after a snowy March in 2023—powered increases of 12% and 9% on Wednesday and Thursday (6 and 7 March). Friday (8 March) brought growth of 3%, aided by an Anthony Joshua boxing match, and only Saturday (9 March) recorded a small year-on-year decline of 1%, despite the benefit of the Six Nations match between England and Ireland. 


Sport and better weather made it another good week for Long Alcoholic Drinks (LAD) categories, with beer sales up by 8% year-on-year and cider rising 11%. Soft drinks (up 7%) had their most positive week for a while, and wine (up 6%) was also strong. The spirits category (down 7%) had yet another negative week, although the figure was the second best since new year.  


After the challenges of January and February it’s great to see drinks sales starting Spring in good year-on-year growth,” says Jonathan Jones, CGA by NIQ’s managing director, UK and Ireland.It will hopefully provide a springboard for big On Premise occasions like St. Patrick’s Day and the Easter bank holiday weekend. With events increasing in importance to overall footfall, it will be key for operators and suppliers to make the most of these by creating great experiences around them that will bring consumers out into the trade. 


The Daily Drinks Tracker provides analysis of sales at managed licensed premises across Britain and is part of CGA by NIQ’s suite of research services delivering in-depth data on category, supplier and brand rate of sale performance. To learn more, click here and email jonathan.jones@nielseniq.com. 

Recent posts:

Share post


Subscribe to our newsletter

Access the latest On Premise news and reports by signing up below.