Beer Brands Get Sober About Dry January—and Learn to Adapt

Sales have dropped between December and January, but experts point to a larger trend

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People in the business of selling alcohol cannot feel great about the following statistic: Between 2015 and 2019, mentions of Dry January on social media increased by 1,083%, according to analysis from market research firm Mintel.

Add to that Nielsen’s estimate that about one in five U.S. adults participated in Dry January last year, and the month of sobriety starts to feel like a phenomenon with enough weight to drag down a company’s bottom line.

Brands and analysts, however, argue that Dry January isn’t an isolated occurrence but part of a larger movement that’s beginning to transform the industry.

“Historically, January is a slower month for beer sales—that was true before the rise of Dry January,” said Stephanie Petropoulos, an associate brand manager at Molson Coors who oversees the Miller family of brands.




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