BETHESDA, MD – With the unofficial start of summer this weekend, American Beverage Licensees (ABL), the national trade association representing America’s beer, wine and spirits retailers, is encouraging beverage consumers to continue their support of their local bars and taverns throughout the summer selling season.
Building on Tavern Month this May, and with socializing, outdoor events, and vacations in full swing, the summer months present a unique opportunity for bars and taverns to play a vital hospitality role and capitalize on the heightened demand for beer, wine, and spirits and the social experiences they compliment. For example, beer sold between Memorial Day and Labor Day accounts for nearly 40% of total annual beer volume in the U.S., according to the Beer Institute. Rose and white wine are also summer favorites, as are refreshing and innovative seasonal cocktails.
Beyond the summer season, the positive economic impact of bars and taverns is felt year-round in economies both national and local. Annually, on-premise alcohol sales create 1.14 million jobs, pay over $33 billion in wages, and have an overall economic impact of $82 billion to the national economy, according to the “2020 Economic Impact Study of America’s Beer, Wine and Spirits Retailers” from economics firm John Dunham & Associates.
“Bars and taverns serve their communities during the summer season by providing enjoyable experiences for consumers and contribute to their local economies by hiring seasonal employees,” said ABL Executive Director John Bodnovich. “After celebrating taverns this May, we are reminding everyone to continue to support these businesses this summer so they can continue to offer space for connection as we all get over the isolating effects that linger from the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Bars and taverns are a way for people to connect with others in safe settings that emphasize human interaction. This role is more important than ever what with the recent release of a report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that found that about half of U.S. adults are experiencing measurable levels of loneliness. By fostering a sense of community by hosting events, supporting local charities, and acting as a venue for various community gatherings, bars and taverns can create a sense of belonging and provide a space for community interaction that can’t be replicated in a virtual setting.
As consumers’ tastes evolve, bars and taverns are also changing with diverse offerings that reflect the explosion of new beverage products, and the reliability of established and proud brands. Trends in beverage alcohol tend to start in on-premise locations where patrons can taste and experiment with new styles and drinks, including no-alcohol and low-alcohol offerings. Summer also presents an opportunity for bars and taverns to create memorable experiences with outdoor seating, special events and seasonal drink menus for customers to explore and enjoy.
As Tavern Month comes to a close this May, and the summer season heats up for America’s bars and taverns, ABL reminds everyone that there’s no better place to connect and celebrate with others this summer than at a local tavern, the Friendliest Place in Town.