Dry January sees nearly 1 in 3 Mexican consumers try non-alcoholic options in the On Premise.
CGA by NielsenIQ’s most recent Mexico Consumer Pulse Report studied consumer behaviour over Dry January, and explored the opportunity for low- and non-alcoholic beverages beyond January.
According to the study, there is growing interest among alcohol users to stick to non-alcoholic beverages even after Dry January.
These findings highlight significant changes in the alcohol norm in Mexico. Denormalizing and increasing the attractiveness of alcohol-free settings matters greatly in the face of widespread alcohol harm in Mexico.

CGA’s new study on alcohol consumer behaviour On Premise

CGA by NielsenIQ engages in consumer research to identify latest trends in consumer behaviour On Premise. On-premise channels refer to establishments selling alcohol which allows users to consume alcohol on-site, such as bars, restaurants, hotels, and wineries. 

CGA by Nielsen IQ’s latest Mexico Consumer Pulse Report investigated the Mexican ‘On Premise’ in detail. Between February 1 – 3, 2023 CGA by NielsenIQ surveyed 1,153 consumers in Mexico aged 18-54 on their expectations, desires and how they plan to behave in the next 2 weeks. The study was focused on identifying consumer behaviour during Dry January and the opportunity for low- and non-alcoholic beverages beyond January.

The current survey was carried out with 1,153 consumers in Mexico aged 18-54, on their expectations, desires and how they plan to behave during the next 2 weeks in terms of alcohol use.

Dry January around the world

‘Dry January’, the challenge of going alcohol-free during the month of January, is a (mental) health promotion campaign. Dry January is popular across the world and has become a cultural staple in the United Kingdom, the United States, as well as other countries around the world, especially in Europe, for example France and Switzerland.

Also Movendi International members in Norway, Germany, and Iceland are engaging in Dry January promotion, in collaboration with Alcohol Change UK, the founding NGO of the Dry January challenge.

Movendi International has developed 20 resources to date to explore the benefits, impact, global success, and cultural reach of Dry January.

Dry January helps people to become more aware of the role alcohol plays in their lives and of the benefits of going alcohol-free, reducing alcohol use, or quitting alcohol. At present, people from all over the world choose to participate in Dry January especially for health reasons.

Dry January is also changing the alcohol norm in countries where many people participate. The harmful and pervasive alcohol norm is increasingly replaced by more inclusive and healthier social norms.

Dry January in Mexico

Approximately 30% of consumers in Mexico have been a part of the alcohol-free challenge, with 88% of those successfully living free from alcohol during the month of January.

The study findings revealed that:

  • Approximately 90% of consumers are currently confident in visiting On Premise, which is a 5% increase compared to January.
  • Two thirds of consumers are planning to visit the On Premise within a week.
  • In addition, 7 in 10 have visited On Premise within the past week, reinforcing the fact that Dry January did not steer some consumers away from the visiting the On Premise.

Consumers who took part in Dry January and who visited the On Premise were asked in the CGA survey about which non-alcoholic beverages they chose during their visit:

  • Soft drinks were selected by the majority (72%),
  • Hot drinks were the second most popular (34%), and
  • Mocktails and non-alcoholic beer were selected by 32% and 25% respectively.

CGA’s new study in Mexico emphasizes growing interest of consumers in non-alcoholic beverages

The latest research also focused on identifying whether consumers who tried non- and low-alcohol products would continue to use them even after Dry January.

  • Approximately 67% of consumers who tried mocktails said they would continue consuming them; and 
  • Nearly 72% of consumers who had non-alcoholic beer during Dry January mentioned that they would choose it again in the On Premise in the future.

Mike Rende, Associate Client Solutions Manager, Americas, explains, as per Spirits Business reporting:

CGA’s latest consumer research in Mexico highlights the growing interest in non-alcoholic beverage options in the On Premise, and just how important it is for brands, suppliers and operators to consider their non-alcoholic offering to capture and fully capitalize across consumer segments interested in exploring this category in both Dry January and beyond.”

Mike Rende, Associate Client Solutions Manager, Americas

Widespread alcohol harm in Mexico

The third regional status report on alcohol and health in the Americas region, published by the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) in 2020 provides detailed information on the current status of alcohol consumption, harms, and alcohol policy in the Region of the Americas, including Mexico.

Findings from the report illustrate the pervasive alcohol harm in Mexico:

  • Deaths due to alcohol increased in Mexico from 32,000 in 2000 to 50,000 in 2019.
  • Between 2000 to 2019, the rate of years of life lost due to alcohol-related disability and premature death increased from 1,400 to 1,600 per 100,000 inhabitants
  • Mexico has the second highest rate of homicides related to alcohol in the Region of the Americas.
Alcohol-atributable deaths in Mexico in 2019
According to third regional status report on alcohol and health in the Americas region, deaths due to alcohol increased in Mexico from 32,000 in 2000 to 50,000 in 2019.

In this context, a broad coalition convened by the Senate, Salud Justa Mx, Mexico Salud Hable Coalition, partnering with the Pan American Health Organization, the National Institute of Psychiatry, and the National Office for Tobacco and Alcohol Control of CONADIC/SSA, launched a campaign aiming to denormalize alcohol through evidence-based, high impact policy solutions recommended by the WHO in the SAFER package. 

Senator Margarita Valdez Martínez, President of the Senate Health Commission highlighted the need for better regulating alcohol sales, specifically in sports arenas, to protect families and children from the harm caused by alcohol products, including violence.

Alcohol norms are leading to heavy and binge alcohol use by young people in Mexico. Dr. Jorge Ameth Villatoro, from the National Institute of Psychiatry cited the example of “pre-drinks”. It is a harmful practice where young people would engage in binge alcohol consumption prior to going out to a party or club to get intoxicated before arriving. 

This reality illustrates the significance of Dry January in Mexico: if the alcohol-free month challenge can facilitate a change in the pervasive and harmful alcohol norm in Mexico, as in other countries, it will be an important step towards broader support for alcohol policy improvements and better health of people and communities in Mexico.


CGA by NielsenIQ: “Dry January sees nearly 1 in 3 Mexican consumers try non-alcoholic options in the On Premise

The Spirits Business: “One-third of Mexican consumers do Dry January