At Wine Opinions, we recently conducted an online panel discussion with 10 wine drinkers, all of whom turned 21 in 2016. These young adults are among the leading edge of the generation following Millennials – called the “iGeneration” (defined in American Generations, 8th Edition).
This was a purely qualitative exercise, a discussion of beverage alcohol usage among the participants – several of whom were still in college, with others just starting careers. They were recruited and screened for their current usage of wine. Half of the group stated their wine consumption to be, on average “a few times a week,” while two stated wine consumption to be about once a week and the remaining four participants stated their wine consumption to average once every 2 – 3 months. They were equally divided between males and females, though females on the whole were the most frequent wine drinkers.
Asked to describe their typical wine drinking habits, one of the female respondents put it this way: “I will have a glass of wine when my roommates and I hold ‘wine nights’ or ‘wine and cheese nights’ where everyone brings a bottle of wine or a block of cheese and we all spend time in the house laughing and catching up.”
As might be expected, cost was a major factor across all types of beverage alcohol purchases, but most were willing to pay $10 for a glass of wine in a restaurant and up to $20 – $30 for a bottle of wine to enjoy at home, though their most frequent wine purchases were in the $10 – $15 per bottle range. Of interest is that none of group expressed any “fear of wine” or uncertainty in their wine shopping experiences, and several cited good values in wines they had recently purchased from both Trader Joes and Costco.
In the 8th edition of American Generations, the authors set the birth years of iGeneration as 1995 – 2009. There are 61 million members of iGeneration (fewer than Millennials or Baby Boomers, but much greater in number than Generation X). They are the most ethnically diverse generation of all: “A minority majority generation.”
As these newly-minted adults move into the beverage alcohol market, Wine Opinions will be conducting more qualitative and quantitative research on their tastes, attitudes, purchases, and usage of wine. There will certainly be much to learn.