Gen Z Consumers Come of Age

Thirsting for flavor, face-to-face fun and products that are “real,” the next generation of LDA consumers aren’t just drinking less, they are drinking different. And The Boston Beer Company has just what they are searching for.

Back in July, the knowledgeable people of Boston Beer got on the phone with Heady Times’ staff writers. The conversation was all about Generation Z and how they purchase alcohol. The take-away is this: The beverage has to suit the occasion & the occasion is mostly an afternoon affair. Here’s the rest of what they had to say…

“Absolutely. But for me, what’s really interesting is not just what they are drinking,” chimed in Dave Burwick, BBC’s President and CEO. “It’s when they are drinking. It’s much earlier in the day. Late-night drinking is less of a thing with this age group. So, thinking ahead to the fall and what Gen Z is likely to purchase, this is what retailers should take to heart. The occasion is likely to be something like a tailgate. It takes place in the afternoon and it’s going to last for hours, so the beverages they bring to the party are easy-to-drink, approachable and lower in alcohol. The sweet spot is between 4% & 5% ABV.”

[Think of an approachable beverage as something with a taste that isn’t too complex. It’s straightforward and refreshing like an Octoberfest lager, Twisted Tea, or the reformulated Truly made with real fruit juice for lots more flavor. It’s not an Imperial stout with aromas of chocolate and coffee.] “It’s a beverage that can keep them in the moment, not anything that’s going to weigh them down. They want a product that enhances their enjoyment of the occasion by imparting a pleasant buzz… something they can keep drinking longer through the day while celebrating with their friends,” explained Audrey Chee-Read, Senior Leader of BBC’s Consumer Insights Team.

“I think young drinkers today are kind of like cross-drinkers. They like seltzers. They like craft beer and they are all about convenient, ready-to-drink canned cocktails with lots of flavor.” – Sam Calagione, Founder of Dogfish Head Brewery

“That’s definitely the case,” said Sam Calagione. “And getting back to what I said earlier about the Gen Z consumer being a cross-drinker, variety is important. We know that because the sale of variety packs are up. When you buy a variety pack, you get to experience different flavors. And be confident that everyone else at the party will find something they like because the group of people they are hanging out with will be as diverse as the stuff they are drinking. It’s so cool that Gen Z is very inclusive and open to accepting others who are different from them.”

About Kramer Beverage 

Kramer Beverage is South Jersey’s largest award-winning beer wholesaler, owned and operated by four generations of the Kramer family since 1924. Based out of Hammonton, Atlantic County, and services eight counties in southern New Jersey with top brands from MolsonCoors, Constellation, Yuengling, Boston Beer, Heineken USA, Pabst, Diageo, FIFCO, and more. Kramer Beverage also distributes a wide variety of craft beers, from suppliers such as New Belgium and Sierra Nevada, to local favorites including Flying Fish, Double Nickel, Evil Genius, Glasstown, Paradox and 2SP. For more information on Kramer Beverage, please visit

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