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Diageo Tests Dairy- And Gluten-Free Baileys Extension

June 21, 2016

Diageo has begun testing a new dairy-free and gluten-free expression of its Baileys cream liqueur brand. Retailing at $21 a 750-ml. in line with other products in the range, Baileys Almande is a 13%-abv almond milk liqueur that is currently on the market in Dallas, Denver and Austin. Diageo tells SND that it’s looking to expand Almande to more markets going forward.

The move into the fast-expanding gluten- and dairy-free product segment could provide a new growth avenue for Baileys, which has lost about one-fifth of its U.S. volume since 2007, as new players—particularly RumChata—have stolen share in the cream liqueurs category. Impact Databank estimates that Baileys declined 3% to 1.2 million cases in the U.S. last year, putting the brand below its 2005 volume, despite concerted efforts to woo consumers with new flavor innovations and advertising aimed at female drinkers in recent years.

Still, Baileys was up 2% by volume and 7% by value in North America in Diageo’s fiscal first half, through December, with growth buttressed by the launch of a new Espresso Crème extension. If increasingly health-conscious consumers take to Almande, it could be another step in the right direction for the world’s largest liqueur brand. —Daniel Marsteller

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