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Insight of the Day: Draught can be “big unlocker” for alcohol-free beer - Heineken on the obstacles in the on-premise

The article features an interview with Karlijn Van Ruiten, Heineken's global innovation manager, discussing the company's plans to innovate in the non-alcoholic beer market. Here are the key points from the interview:

1. Growth of Non-Alcoholic Beer in Europe: Non-alcoholic beer, particularly Heineken 0.0, has seen significant growth in Europe. Spain and the Netherlands are leading markets, with a high share of consumers drinking non-alcoholic beer. The UK is still catching up but has potential for double-digit growth.

2. Market Trends: The sub-segment of "Tostada" non-alcoholic beer is growing rapidly in Spain, outpacing other types of non-alcoholic beer. Innovation, such as introducing new flavors and subcategories, has been driving growth in the non-alcoholic beer category.

3. Challenges in On-Premise Market: The on-premise market, particularly getting non-alcoholic beer on draught, presents challenges due to the risk of fermentation and the need for specialized dispense solutions. Heineken is investing in solutions like the "Blade" and "David" to ensure the safety and quality of non-alcoholic beer on tap.

4. Global Expansion: While Europe remains a priority market for Heineken 0.0, the company is also experiencing growth in the Americas region, particularly in Mexico and Brazil. However, expansion in Asia-Pacific (APAC) markets may be slower due to cultural differences and consumer behavior.

5. Innovation and Consumer Education: Heineken continues to innovate in the non-alcoholic beer category, exploring new flavors and product variants. Consumer education is crucial, particularly regarding alcohol content labeling, to ensure transparency and clarity for consumers.

6. Future Outlook: Heineken remains committed to driving growth in the non-alcoholic beer category and sees opportunities for further innovation and expansion, both in Europe and globally.

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