The food and beverage sector of Australian market has played an important role in the life of its citizens and continue to provide opportunities for exporters. Specifically, the consumption habits of alcoholic beverages drink solutions have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. 

The current alcoholic market size in Australia is roughly A$16.9 billion by 2022. Despite the largest consumption categories of alcoholic drinks market in Australia are beer and wine, the market of RTD (Ready-to-Drink) have stood out during the pandemic.  

Australians are accepting the routine of drinking at home. This new lifestyle was still flowing even after restrictions were cancelled for pubs and bars. Population of Australian consuming RTDs increased from 11% up to 13.5% in the past year. This kind of preforming stands out from the rest of liquor types. According to IBIS World, RTD revenue will reach roughly A$1.2 billion in 2022-23.  

The retail liquor market is highly dominated by Endeavour Group (43.5%), Coles Group (17.1%) and Metcash (10.4%) Outside of the major players, with Australians moving back to restaurants, bars and pubs, there are still opportunities to dive into cooperating with on-premises wholesalers and outlets.  

In addition, alcohol delivery sales are on the rise, and this trend is expected to hold. Customers are enjoying getting their drinks delivered for convenience, more orders are being made from online stores, such as DanMurphy’s, BMW, Liquorland, etc. For exporters who wish to sell alcoholic drinks in the Australian market, it is a good option to look for partners who distribute on online retail sector as well. 

However, Australia has strict regulations around alcoholic beverages, and the details differs from state to state. For example, traditionally in most states of Australia, supermarkets have not been allowed to sell alcohol. There will usually be a separate store near the supermarket which sells alcohol owned by the supermarket group.  

The regulation is also strict towards the packaging and labelling of the products, where all alcohol products need to show the w/w% percentage of alcohol in the beverage. The packaging cannot be appealing to children or easy to confuse with soft drinks. These kinds of drinks will be listed as undesirable drink under a state, and thus banned from the retail sector. 

Potential exporters who are considering enter the Australian market need to understand the market trend, local competitors, as well as the regulations and restrictions. Shipping costs also need to be considered. 

Industry publications could be checked in prior to gather information. The SHOUT, Drinks Trade, and Yaffa Media are the leading and most famous news service for the liquor industry, including news article, customer review published on both online and printed version.  

There are also trade events in Australia which could be referenced, for example, Food Service Australia, The Australian Liquor Industry Awards, Queensland Beer Week

March 2024