A DRAUGHT version of Magners Irish Cider is to be made available in the UK from May, to be sold exclusively through Coors.
Producer C&C Group said there was a market for both draught and packaged Magners in pubs, adding that for a “point of difference”, the draught variety should be served without ice. The draught cider will be sold as a premium drink in comparison to other ciders.
Marketing director Maurice Breen said the time was right for a UK draught launch, following its success in Ireland. “We have a young history, but our brand awareness is high and now we have a strong partner in Coors to work with, a draught launch makes sense," he said.
“Draught cider is growing year on year, but premium draught is where we see the greatest opportunity in a market with limited choice.”
The move came after a C&C trading statement showed Magners on trade volume fell by 28% over the last six months.
Breen added the decline was down to the poor summer and rival brands entering the marketplace.
He said: “I don’t think you can have the same level of success we’ve had over the last three to four years without competitors getting in on the act.
In Bulmers, Scottish & Newcastle have come up with a cider that, at least in terms of packaging, is very similar to ours.”
Magners plans a major marketing package to support the draught launch and roll out.
In 2007, it had the highest share of voice of any long alcoholic drink brand and Magners said this year’s overall spend for the brand will be at a similar level.