Mexico’s Cantina channel: Five CGA insights for beverage suppliers

CGA by NIQ’s most recent Mexico On Premise User Study (OPUS) research reveals insights into consumers’ behaviours and attitudes when visiting Cantinas and the significant opportunities the Cantina channel can provide for beverage alcohol suppliers. 

Click here to view this blog in Spanish/Ver este blog en español


OPUS is a nationally representative survey of On Premise users, designed to help you understand where and how to reach your target consumers. The research provides size of the prize opportunities for drinks categories and brands by occasions and channel.   


Here are five key insights from recent consumer research conducted in Mexico — and what they mean for drinks suppliers and operators.  


1 Half of Cantina visitors visit weekly 

Cantinas are most popular with On Premise visitors aged 35+ and are more likely to be male. These consumers typically engage with the Cantina channel weekly (48%), and 42% visit the channel once or twice a month. Targeting this committed and loyal group of consumers is important for BevAl suppliers looking to maximise their drinks sales in the On Premise.  


2 Beer dominates but consumers want choice 

Suppliers can increase sales by offering a diverse range of drinks options and brands. Beer is the dominant category for consumption among consumers visiting Cantinas. In particular, domestic beer leads consumption, with three-quarters (75%) of consumers favouring domestic brands. OPUS highlights the popularity of several other categories, including Spirits and Cocktails, with Tequila chosen by more than half (56%) of consumers and 23% consuming Cocktails.  


3 Hygiene and a good recommendation go a long way 

When choosing a Cantina to visit, good hygiene standards (40%) are at the top of consumers’ considerations, followed closely by recommendations from friends and family (39%), a wide selection of drinks available (33%), and drink deals or promotions (28%). Understanding visitor motives enables suppliers to meet the needs of consumers visiting. Taking discounts/promotions into consideration will also help to increase consumer visitation and spend in the channel.   


4 There are lots of reasons for visiting 

Mixed occasions provide opportunities for suppliers to leverage the needs states of the consumers visiting Cantinas. The most popular occasions for visits are after-work drinks (57%), relaxed/quiet drinks (48%), high-tempo drinks (47%), and special occasions (42%). This shows that social gatherings in Cantinas have no bounds, allowing suppliers to tap into these occasions, understand who their target consumers are and why they are visiting the channel.  


5 Price and quality influence drinks choice 

The data also shows the different variables behind people’s drinks choices in the On Premise. Price is the main factor influencing drinks choice in Cantinas, accounting for 51% of all drink choices. Additionally, consumers visiting Cantinas rely on friends’ recommendations (40%) and the quality of brands on offer (33%). Having a clear price offering which appeals to those consumers who are more price-conscious, while also appealing to consumers who are looking for higher-quality brands will help drive success within the channel.   


Mike Rende, Associate Client Solutions Manager – Americas, said: “Beverage alcohol suppliers can benefit greatly from the Cantina channel. Maximising consumption opportunities of the regular visitors to the channel, while also meeting the needs of consumers visiting for different occasions, is a growing avenue for BevAl suppliers, helping to boost volume sales and growth in Cantinas”. 


CGA’s twice-yearly OPUS survey is a rich resource of data and insights into consumers’ behaviours, habits and preferences in the On Premise. It provides comprehensive analysis of the latest trends and topics, and solutions to questions about brand, category, channel and occasion-specific performance. To learn how this definitive picture of consumers’ interaction with the On Premise can help all suppliers and operators build winning sales and marketing strategies, email Mike Rende, Associate Client Solutions Manager – Americas at . 

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