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Post-lockdown consumers reach for alcohol-free drinks to avoid hangovers

Consumers reaching for alcohol-free drinks
Consumers reaching for alcohol-free drinks 01:50

Restaurants and bars in the U.S. are reopening and Americans who have been cooped up for more than a year are relishing socializing in person again. What's different, though, is that watering-hole patrons are increasingly consuming alcohol-free cocktails, wine and beer, after lockdown fueled an uptick in alcohol sales in the early months of the pandemic.

Sans Bar in Austin, Texas, is a bar without booze, where patrons gather to meet, listen to live music, and enjoy alcohol-free cocktails. Owner Chris Marshall told CBSN that the bulk of his patrons aren't sober — except for when they visit the establishment.

"A lot of people just want to drink less. A lot of people just want to socialize without having the hangover," he told CBSN. 

Retailers are serving up dozens of varieties of alcohol-free spirits like zero-proof gin and tequila, and non-alcoholic beers.

Drinks market analysis company IWSR said interest in low- and no-alcohol beer, wine and spirits is growing faster than overall alcohol consumption. 

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"Moderation has become part of the everyday lifestyle," Brandy Rand, chief operating officer of IWSR told CBSN. 

Los Angeles-based botanical beverage and body care company Amass has also noticed that consumers are gravitating toward it's non-alcoholic spirit, called Riverine. Launched in late January, sales of Riverine are outpacing the company's flagship gin product by 400%. It also comprises 40% of the company's e-commerce sales, a company spokesperson told CBS MoneyWatch. 

Consumers report that they enjoy winding down with a clear head — and of course waking up the next morning headache-free.

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