Despite being launched just two days before COVID-19 lockdowns in March, Lion says its new XXXX Dry has been a hit in Queensland and NT.
The easy drinking full strength (4.2%) lager initially launched on tap in selected venues in Queensland and the Northern Territory, with 330ml bottles following in late April and cans hitting the market last month.
XXXX brand director Amy Darvill told Brews News the beer is tracking at more than double its original volume targets.
“It has been incredibly warmly received by Queenslanders, so we’ve sold over 100,000 cartons of XXXX Dry since we launched a few months ago,” she said.
“We’ve had the highest trial rate of any beer NPD [new product development] in the last three years in Queensland.
In bottle shops, consumers are purchasing cartons over six-packs, with the brand already selling towards 80% of our total volume through cartons, an indication that trial has led to strong conversion.
Thirsty Camel Alice Springs (above) noted on Facebook: “Going great guns. XXXX Dry is definitely a favourite already.”
“We know that we’ve achieved the highest prompted awareness in the last five years at that three month mark, so over 35% of Queenslanders are now aware of this product, which is the highest out of any new product over the last five years in that particular state,” Darvill said.
And Lion expects the beer will be even popular over summer.
Tully Hadley, Head Brewer at the XXXX Castlemaine Perkins Brewery said: “To give XXXX DRY a crisp finish we’ve used Nelson Sauvin hops, which gives a slight aroma and makes the beer incredibly refreshing for those hot Queensland days.”
XXXX Dry is available at around 500 venues now, which Lion expects to steadily rise as restrictions ease.
And it’s attracting new and younger drinkers to the 140-year-old beer, which Darvill said is strategically important to Lion as XXXX battles Great Northern for supremacy in Queensland.
Darvill said that Great Northern had recently taken the number one spot in Queensland through IRI volume by a “very small gap”.
“We’re certainly not gonna rest on our laurels, and we want that number one spot back,” Darvill said.