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Alternative Formats, Brand Offshoots Fuel Growth For Barefoot

February 20, 2020

E.&J. Gallo-owned Barefoot is the second-largest wine brand in the U.S. by volume at more than 18 million cases, according to Impact Databank, and is the only wine brand with U.S. retail sales exceeding $1 billion. While Barefoot continues to command heavy volumes with its traditional 750-ml. ($6) and 1.5-liter bottles ($11), alternative packaging formats and innovative offshoots are becoming a larger part of the mix for the franchise, in line with market trends, as it looks to cultivate the next generation of consumers.

“Alternative packaging is, and will continue to be, a growing part of the Barefoot portfolio,” notes Barefoot vice president of marketing Anna Bell. “The overall alternative packaging table wine category is growing at double-digits, and Barefoot alternative packaging is seeing even higher growth rates.”

Among the newer Barefoot offerings leading the charge in the alternative packaging segment is the brand’s On Tap extension, a three-liter box variant that launched in 2018 and depleted the equivalent of 640,000 9-liter cases last year, retailing at $19. Midway through the year, the brand followed up with Wine-to-Go ($5), a line of Moscato, Rosé, Pinot Grigio, and Chardonnay packaged in 500-ml. cartons with screwcaps. “We know that consumers are looking for products in on-the-go and single-serve occasions,” says Bell.

Last fall, Barefoot debuted “Fruitscatos,” a range of fruit Moscatos in Apple, Peach, and Strawberry flavors that launched in 750-ml. bottles, which Bell says has also been well-received. That extension follows the similarly fruit-forward Barefoot Spritzers offshoot, which has grown into a million-case brand in its own right.

Most recently, Barefoot launched a lineup of wine-based hard seltzers, including Pineapple & Passion Fruit, Cherry & Cranberry, Peach & Nectarine, and Strawberry & Guava flavors that are at 4% abv and retail at $8 a 4-pack and $20 for a variety 12-pack. While it’s not the first hard seltzer play from Gallo—which unveiled a vodka-based High Noon brand last spring and saw it reach 275,000 cases in its debut year—Bell says Barefoot seltzers’ wine-based makeup is a differentiator, and that the launch represents “a big opportunity” for the brand.—Daniel Marsteller

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