Growth in cider has stalled in recent years with a series of poor summers and high profile sporting events, which favoured beer, taking their toll.
However Mintel forecasts a return growth by 2020 when value sales should reach £3.4bn.
Strongbow remains the most popular brand in the category by a (west) country mile, accounting for a quarter of the value sales and 29 per cent of volume sales .The core apple variant has stalled in recent years but this has been offset by the runaway success of newer variants such as Dark Fruit.
The other big news from Strongbow in recent years has been the launch of a cloudy variant which, alongside Thatchers Somerset Haze, has put cloudy cider back on the radar for many drinkers. Both are lightly carbonated in a bid to win favour – a mere 27 per cent of cider drinkers say they prefer still ciders.
Big number: 54 per cent of cider drinkers think that cider is as good as wine for drinking with meals
Other innovation has come at the top end of the market, such as Stassen, which comes in a Champagne-style bottle and is designed to be drunk with food.
Analysts at Mintel suggest that this could be one of the ways cider's recent downturn in fortunes could be reversed, as 54 per cent of cider drinkers think that cider is as good as wine for drinking with meals.
All statistics from Mintel
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