For many of us, the impact of Covid added significant levels of anxiety, prolonged uncertainty, and isolation during the pandemic. The result was a reported increase in alcohol consumption, which rose among adults over age 30 by 14% during the pandemic, with a 41% increase in women heavily drinking, according to a September 2020 Rand Corporation study.
However, for some, a beacon called out for a healthier option to align with an appeal by a small but influential segment of consumers seeking socially relaxing options away from alcohol towards botanical beverages that are low in sugar and non-alcoholic. And what if I told you that this movement, is gaining a groundswell of support as folks emerge from lockdowns and mandates to reconnect in social settings with friends and family.
It begins with the Sober Curious, who simply have paused on alcohol altogether. Gravitation to “zero-proof” product offerings, including botanical mixers, and functional beverages are entering the marketplace to fill the void, with recipes to inspire the making of “mocktails” as the Sober Curious refrain from alcoholic cocktails as a badge of honor to health and healing.
Interestingly, the primary drivers of the non-alcoholic drink industry are millennials accounting for almost 50% of the revenue. Numbers show that this is not a fad, confirming a movement inspired by a desire for wellness and a healthier lifestyle. Millennials are shown to be more mindful about what they are ingesting into their bodies and also the importance of connection in the age of COVID-19. With so much separation from the use of screens for work and social media, many are seeking genuine connections. Millennials have started to tap into the non-alcoholic market by socializing without alcohol and remaining present and alert in their interactions with peers. Mental health has also become a more important talking point and the effect that alcohol has on mental health is being taken into account by millennials, concerned about alcohol’s impact on their mood, level of alertness, and even their image on social media. These consumers want to be responsible and mindful of themselves and receptive to the use of plant-based remedies for health and well-being.
Adding to the appeal for non-alcoholic beverages is also being driven as talented culinary chefs turn their attention to herbal mixology with improved recipes. The recipes are incorporating desirable nutrients and bioactive compounds such as antioxidants, prebiotics, herbal adaptogens, proteins, minerals, and vitamins. Just Imagine flavorful plant-based spirits, that unwind the nerves and calm your spirit, without the negative effects of alcohol.
Influences are arising from a growing interest in state-changing adaptogenic herbs, medicinal, and psychedelic mushrooms that when blended into a mix of flavorful elixirs. These elixirs provide a socially relaxing state of mind for those who engage and connect with a mind, body, and spirit.
Discover the power of the Sober Curious movement, the healthy benefits of non-alcoholic drinks, and how you can grow beyond a reliance on alcohol to reach your full potential!
The Non-Alcoholic Movement, also known as the “Sober Curious” movement, has come into full power in 2022 thanks in part to an annual challenge that has occurred for the last eight years. “Dry January” was started by the UK’s Alcohol Concern Charity as a way to try and challenge social drinkers to give up the red solo cups and experience a month of sobriety. In 2022, this challenge was picked up by the incredibly popular social media and video app TikTok. Needless to say, the rest is history. This spark of sobriety and growing production of drinks like kombucha has aided in creating the Non-Alcoholic Movement!
As mentioned above, kombucha has replaced beer for many people already! But what power can a fermented drink like kombucha, or a non-alcoholic mocktail hold for people who rely on alcohol for social situations? Well, the answers lie in their ingredients.
Kombucha is an adaptogen. Adaptogens are a variety of plants and mushrooms that can help your body relax and respond to stress. Similar to the downing effects of alcohol on the human brain, adaptogens can soothe any anxieties and stressors to allow you to socialize without any baggage! Many mocktails (non-alcoholic drinks and mixers) are made with adaptogens to help non-drinkers mix in with their friends who may not be a part of the movement.
Adaptogens are a wonderful alternative to alcohol because they allow you to keep a sound mind and body while still enjoying festivities or winding down for the night!
Sobriety allows you to be aware of your actions, keep control of your body, and retain a sound mind even as you age. 1 in 8 Americans can fall into Alcoholism without even meaning to– and general sobriety can help you avoid this. Not drinking alcohol allows your body to grow without the damaging effects drinking may have on you.
Not relying on drinks for social situations can also help those in recovery from alcoholism. Being able to drink a non-alcoholic beverage can keep people sober longer! This also allows them to be themselves without wishing to reach for the bottle!
Consider adopting the Non-Alcoholic Movement into your own life. Sobriety can be a key step on your journey to discovering your true self, so don’t let that chance slip away!
Interested in trying out some non-alcoholic beverages? Try Grove 42 Aromatic Distilled Non-Alcoholic Spirit for a citrusy and brightening elixir! And, if you want a drink that focuses on your mind, spirit, and enjoyment, try Plant Alchemy’s line of adaptogenic elixirs like the Botanical Joy Concentrate or the Botanical Brain Concentrate!
Here at The Alchemist’s Kitchen, we see a further shift from bland-tasting non-alcoholic beverages to delicious proxies, mixers, and organic syrups that are delightful refreshments. Makers who are focused on taste provide an even greater incentive for consumers to craft their own cocktail blends when entertaining at home.
In fact, we are convinced that the appeal will continue to flourish with influences arising from a growing interest in state-changing hydration. Witness a mixing of adaptogenic herbs, medicinal mushrooms, and mildly psychoactive seeds and roots that when blended into an elixir, stimulate a socially relaxing state to engage and connect with a mind, body, and spirit that is activated for living, and loving.
The Alchemist’s Kitchen Elixir Bar is located at 117 Crosby St. in New York City.