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US Hispanics prefer beer over wine: Mintel

By Caroline Scott-Thomas , 26-Jul-2012
Last updated the 26-Jul-2012 at 15:22 GMT

US Hispanics’ beverage consumption is the latest aspect of this influential group’s spending habits to enter the spotlight, in a new report from market research organization Mintel.

Hispanic consumption trends have been a major area of market research over the past few years, as the demographic has a growth rate that is more than twice the national average, and a spending power estimated to hit $1.3trn in 2012.

Generally speaking, Hispanics tend to drink more non-alcoholic beverages than any other ethnic group in the United States, and broad alcohol consumption trends are differ from those of other ethnicities too. Beer is the most popular choice for US Hispanics, who drink more imported beer than any other ethnic group. More than a quarter (27%) of Hispanics drinks tequila – a higher rate than other demographics – although this is driven by the most acculturated Hispanic consumers, according to the market researcher.

Meanwhile, wine is the least favorite alcoholic beverage among Hispanics, consumed by 23%, as opposed to a third (33%) of the total population.

“Many US Hispanics, particularly Mexicans, have not been exposed to wine in their home country, so there isn’t a wine drinking culture or tradition,” said senior multi-cultural analyst at Mintel Leylha Ahuile. “However, we expect this to change in the coming years as it is already on the rise.”

She said that the volume of wine consumed by Hispanics between 2005 and 2010 had increased by nearly 50%, and levels of acculturation were impacting wine consumption, as a greater proportion of US Hispanics were second or third generation in the US.

This latest research also has echoes of earlier calls to reject the notion that US Hispanics are a homogeneous group.

Ahuile said: “When choosing how to spend their beverage dollars, Hispanics’ country of origin, income, acculturation level and age drive their purchasing decisions.  Lifestyle is also important, including family size and the presence of children in the household.”

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