5 things you may not know about the nonalcoholic beer industry

Over the past few years, a growing number of people around the world have looked toward nonalcoholic beer, wine, and spirits as alternatives to traditional alcoholic drinks for a variety of reasons. Some people are choosing not to drink for health reasons—such as being pregnant or in recovery from addiction—while others are simply choosing to not make alcohol a part of their overall diet. Regardless of why, the choice not to drink has demonstrated a significant opportunity for the growing market of nonalcoholic alternatives.

While people may like the effects of cutting back on alcohol—particularly those curtailing their alcohol consumption but not abstaining from alcohol entirely—they likely aren’t wanting to skip the social element that often accompanies getting drinks with friends. Some also miss the taste of a crisp beer on a hot afternoon or at the pub after work. Enter nonalcoholic beer.

Although nonalcoholic beer has its roots in the Prohibition era in the United States almost a century ago, it has seen a dramatic resurgence in popularity recently. Part of this can be attributed to a growing interest in health and wellness around the world. Globally, nonalcoholic beer is expected to become a more than $35 billion sector by 2030, according to a recent market analysis.

Brewers of all kinds—both macro and micro (or craft)—have responded, removing certain yeast strains or employing thermal brewing techniques to develop nonalcoholic alternatives to their most beloved beers that replicate the taste and feel of traditional beer as much as possible.

As the popularity of alcohol-free beer continues to grow in Europe and stateside, Zinnia Health outlined what you should know about this developing beverage industry.

Starting July 1, residents of Soso will be able to purchase beer in their town. And it was done without having to vote on it, Soso Mayor Ralph Cahill said.

“When I was running for mayor, I told people, why we would be able to sell Jack Daniel’s on one corner and not beer on the other,” Cahill said. “So (Rep.) Donnie Scoggin (R-Ellisville) introduced a bill so we could get beer. The committee never brought it up.”

After brainstorming and trying to come up with another way to get beer in Soso, Cahill and Scoggin got Soso designated as a “resort area” community.

“Soso can serve beer in the city limits as a resort status community,” Cahill said. “It was a little bit involved to get the resort status and we had a few meetings in Jackson. The first six-pack in Soso I’m going to buy for Donnie.”

A qualified resort area under the House Bill 1381 means any area or locality outside of the limits of incorporated municipalities in this state commonly known and accepted as a place that regularly and customarily attracts tourists, vacationists and other transients because of its historical, scenic or recreational facilities or attractions, or because of other attributes.

“Hopefully, everything will be in place on July 1, and people can buy beer,” Cahill said. “It’s going to help the town sales-tax wise — not just with the beer, but everything that goes with the beer. If you want to have a picnic and get some beer along with food, you won’t have to go to (Laurel).”

The main purpose of getting beer in Soso was to help with the sales tax, Cahill said. Beer, liquor and wine sales are permitted in Laurel, while Ellisville businesses can sell beer, but not liquor or wine.

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