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Europe’s economic crisis obliterates Gen Z and millennial alcohol spending

Europe's economic crisis obliterates Gen Z and millennial alcohol spending


The European economy is going through a historically difficult period, whether you look at measures of GDP, exports, or consumer confidence. Now, signs are beginning to emerge that the struggle for growth and fears over jobs are fundamentally changing how people in Europe shop—and drink.

Europe’s young people are starting to spend less on alcohol and they don’t look like they’re going to be returning to binging in bars and nightclubs any time soon. But it’s likely to be the looming expectation of recession, not lifestyle choices, that is kicking off a fresh charge for sobriety. 

Europe’s crisis comes for the alcohol aisle 

A survey of 3,500 people across seven European countries shows historically high inflation, rising interest rates, and the energy crisis have led to a massive drop off in the amount of money people think they have to spend each month.

Savanta’s Consumer Compass report shows Brits and the French think they have about a third less to spend on non-essentials than they did a year ago, while perceived disposable income fell by a quarter in Germany and Italy. 

Even in the typically well-insulated Nordic countries, there is a perceived 21% fall in budgets.

Several major European economies are teetering on the verge of a technical recession, with Europe’s biggest economy, Germany, shrinking by 0.3% in 2023.

Amid an according squeeze in household budgets, few items in consumers’ baskets have been deemed sacred. Only groceries, utility bills, and gasoline have been protected by European residents, while things like dining out, fashion, and holidays have all been sacrificed, according to Savanta.

But for Gen Z and Millennials in particular, it’s alcohol that has been virtually wiped from their expenses, whether that’s in restaurants, bars, or on the grocery aisle. 

Savanta didn’t observe any increase in alcohol spending over the usually indulgent festive period last year. Across most of the major European economies, more than half of shoppers say they spent less on alcohol in 2023.

The trend toward sobriety is one driven by the continent’s struggling young people. Savanta’s research shows among Europe’s 18-34-year-olds, 63% are spending less on alcohol purchases in supermarkets, while 67% are drinking less when they go to restaurants and bars. 

Italian Gen Zers are leading that temperance movement, with seven in 10 young people there choosing to cut back on alcohol spending…

Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at Fortune | FORTUNE…