Below-premium and budget beers now make up the fastest-growing segment.
According to the Dallas Morning News, 7-Eleven plans to market the beer as “premium lager beer at a below-premium price,” said Dan Skinner, 7-Eleven’s category manager for alcohol beverages. “Our customer has been telling us for some time that they’re looking for a more value-priced brand,” he said. “In this tough economy, they’re looking for value and ways to make their dollar go further.”
Although Texas sales still must be approved by the Alcoholic Beverage Commission, the beer has already entered stores in the northwest, northern California and northern Nevada.
Game Day is being produced by City Brewery of La Crosse, Wisconsin. The brew comes in two varieties – Light and Ice – and two sizes: 24oz singles with a suggested retail price of $1.49 and $1.89, and a 12-pack of 12oz cans with a suggested retail price between $6.99 and $8.99.
Prices will vary based on distribution costs and state and local alcohol taxes. A 12-pack of a brand such as Bud Light would cost between $10 and $11 in most areas, Skinner told the Dallas Morning News.
Game Day face off against premium beers such as Bud Light, Coors Light and Miller Lite, which now dominate sales at 7-Eleven – the third-largest beer retailer in the US behind Walmart and Kroger (according to the Nielsen Co).
This isn’t 7-Eleven’s first foray into the beer category. 7-Eleven introduced Santiago de Oro imported beer in 2003 to compete with Corona, but the beer was discontinued a year later. But 7-Eleven noted today’s market is a different animal.
“When 7-Eleven introduced Santiago de Oro imported beer in 2003, the economic times were much different,” said Margaret Chabris from 7-Eleven. “We went up against a name brand that was merchandised for the exotic hoiday-in-a-bottle experience, and consumers were attracted to that. They were buying ‘up’ and not as concerned with price.
“In 2003, a customer had $20 in his pocket, and gas was about $1.50 a gallon. Today, he might have $10 in his pocket and gas is $3 a gallon. Many more consumers are looking for ways to save money, including the beer they drink.”
Source: Dallas Morning News/Convenience Store Decisions Group
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