JanFeb 2018 Stateways

StateWays is the only magazine exclusively covering the control state system within the beverage alcohol industry, with annual updates from liquor control commissions and alcohol control boards and yearly fiscal reporting from control jurisdictions

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StateWays | | January/February 2018 24 The fi nal product comes in a retro 1950s/'60s-era glass Irish cream bottle with a swing-top enclosure. "The movement towards premium quality is what this product is all about," Harris says. One common consumer fear with cream liqueurs is spoiling. But Harris believes these concerns are outdated. "The cream liqueur category has been around a long time," he says. "There's a lot of technology now that goes into stabi- lizing these products. Shelf life is not a major issue for us. Obvi- ously you need to store these products at a proper temperature, and stores should rotate product. But distributors have qual- ity control standards that make it is not a problem." RUMCHATA A relatively new brand in the cream liqueur cate- gory has rocketed up the sales chart in recent years. RumChata launched in 2009. According to Agave Loco, the company behind the brand, it's now the second-best-selling cream liqueur in America (after the Bailey's juggernaut). The product combines cream liqueur with Caribbean rum and cinnamon, vanilla, sugar and other spices. The fi nal fl avor is similar to a horchata: a Spanish/Latin spiced drink that's common in summer. After eight years of growth, RumChata now comprises 16% of the U.S. cream liqueur cate- gory, the company says. This despite the over- all cordials and liqueur category slipping 2% in 2016. Why the quick, sustained success? "Consumers are demanding fl avor and premiumization in all areas," says Bob Kopach, Agave Loco director of public re- lations. "They are continuing to look for great innovative new tastes, versatility and mixability. RumChata tastes great by itself or mixed with hundreds of other spirits." Many consumers fi rst tasted RumChata in a popular cock- tail shot that mixes the liqueur with Fireball cinnamon whis- key. That helped expand the product's demo from women aged 21-39 to include the LDA-30 male shot drinkers. Kopach also reports another target demo: 30-50 year-old women who sip RumChata at night to relax. All this added up has helped the cream liqueur brand over- come a reputation of being a holiday-season drink. Like McCormick Distilling, RumChata has embraced the mixology movement. The brand quickly supported the Rum- Chata-and-Fireball shot trend, and has marketed the product through other mixed drinks. In warmer months it promotes RumChata sorbets, coladas and root beer fl oats. Winter brings RumChata salted car- amel apple martinis, pumpkin pie martini and gingerbread cocktail. Espresso martinis, and bourbon cream and rumchata grasshoppers, are drinkable year-round. On-premise, the brand recently launched a Shot-A-Chata program. The Shot-A-Chata is a two-chamber shot glass that allows bar- tenders to serve RumChata with any other spirit, beer or soft drink, without the worry of separation when mixed together due to RumChata's cream base. "Accounts can profi t more on each serve by pouring two brands in one glass," Kopach says. Launched last July, FrappaChata already has distribution in 46 states in accounts the size of Walmart, Meijer and Kroger. "We are projecting to sell 100,000 cases in 2017 — accomplished in only six months," Kopach says. RumChata recently launched MiniChatas creamer cups na- tionally, in response to fans who used RumChata as creamer in coffee, tea and iced coffee. These are 25-ml. peel-top cups fi lled with RumChata. Recent Facebook posts have generated over 12 million views, according to Kopach, as this package "has taken on a life of its own with the consumer." • LEADING BRANDS OF CREAM LIQUEURS, 2014-2016 (000 9-liter cases) % Change Brand Supplier 2014 2015 2016 15/'16 Baileys Diageo 1,300 1,287 1,270 -1.3 Rum Chata Agave Loco Brands 450 525 530 1.0 Carolans Heaven Hill 381 366 364 -0.5 Tequila Rose McCormick Distilling 177 181 182 0.6 St. Brendan's Luxco 160 167 168 0.6 Ryan's Original Sazerac 110 117 119 2.1 E&J Cask & Cream E&J Gallo Winery 105 104 103 -1.0 Total Leading Brands 2,683 2,747 2,736 -0.4 Total Cream Liqueurs 3,029 3,006 2,991 -0.5 Source: The Beverage Information & Insights Group Liquor Handbook 2017. For more data and analysis, visit CREAM LIQUEURS | CATEGORY UPDATE

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