Dry Cider July Launches July First to Showcase Hard Cider with 0g Sugar

The American Cider Association (ACA) is launching Dry Cider July on July First to highlight hard ciders containing zero grams of residual sugar. The Association is encouraging others to join the campaign through social media with the hashtags #dryciderjuly and #pickdrycider. This year the association will be working with their partners at Cider Culture to highlight dry hard ciders throughout the month of July.

The Association’s CEO Michelle McGrath debunks the myth that dry ciders don’t exist, “As cider industry professionals, we hear people asking about less sweet ciders all the time. Luckily, for drinkers looking to monitor their sugar intake or who prefer the flavor of dry ciders, there are literally thousands of options.” 

The ACA hosts a dry cidery directory on their website to make finding bone dry hard ciders easier. The directory can be found here on ACA’s website, and is easily sorted to help consumers find no-sugar ciders local to them.

Alcohol is created when yeast converts sugar into alcohol through fermentation. A cider that contains no residual sugar has been fermented to absolute dryness. Sometimes cidermakers will blend a completely dry cider with fresh juice for acid/sugar balance, but other times they leave the cider entirely dry. These dry ciders with zero grams of sugar in the final product are the focus of the Dry Cider July campaign

“The brain has a hard time distinguishing fruity from sweet. Many ciders with absolutely no sugar in them can still be very fruity,” explains McGrath. 

The ciders in the Dry Cider Directory reflect the variety of flavors and styles possible. From single varietal ciders showcasing specific apple varieties and served in a 750 ml bottle to ciders aged on rose petals and sage and served in a 12 oz can, the range found in dry ciders is impressive.

Follow the association on their Instagram account @pickcider and on Cider Culture’s Instagram account @ciderculture to learn more about the campaign. 


Fresh Data Insights Found in Latest Members-Only Cider Market Dashboard

For the lastest 13 week period through May 20, 2023, regional cider brand sales were up 7.2% YOY per NIQ.

Cideries use data talking points like this to make decisions and to pitch retailers, investors and wholesalers. But good data is hard to find and can be cost prohibitive. We have some good news for you though. Cider market data is included in your membership with the American Cider Association–what a great benefit!

The latest 3 Tier Beverages dashboard is now available to ACA members with data current as of May 20, 2023. Explore recent off-premise cider sales trends by state, packaging, style and more. 

3 Tier Beverages, in partnership with NIQ, is proud to be the official data supplier of the American Cider Association. Part of this partnership brings you quarterly dashboards with key market data and insights to help you drive your business forward. Should you be interested in more detail on your brands/markets, please reach out to Mary Mills at 3 Tier Beverages.

If you missed our dashboard orientation webinar, you can watch it here.

In addition, there is a Glossary of Attributes available to help you understand the terms used as you progress through the data. You can download the glossary here.

Looking for data for previous time periods? Access our Cider Reports Library here.

We are data nerds here at ACA so please feel free to reach out if you have any questions.

How to Submit Your SKUs to Circana

We want to make sure your cider is accounted for in national sales data. It’s important that every cider is included so we can have an accurate picture of the cider industry and can collect data that you can use when pitching your ciders to wholesalers and retailers around the country. Please submit your new or updated SKUs to Circana today.

Please find below detailed instructions for how to submit new products to Circana (formerly IRI).

Work with your Client Service Consultant to submit image labels. If you are not a Circana client, send images directly to: DCA.ElectronicImage@circana.com.

Submission Guidelines

  • New SKU – send images of packaging with UPC on the packaging; Circana does not accept images without clear UPCs.
    • If an item is a seasonal/series/rotational, provide packaging with the multiple styles/flavors to Circana. If those packaging images are not available, provide a sell sheet or proof that there are multiple styles/flavors using the same UPC. If you want a specific series name included in the coding, please include the word “series” in the packaging name, otherwise Circana will code as seasonal.
    • Image Requirements
      • Multi-packs need either a flat-file package image, two images of the front and the side of the package containing the UPC, or a flattened carton to show both front and side with UPC.
      • Multi-packs in snap ring/hicone (where individual can/bottle only option for scanning the multi-pack unit). Turn one can/bottle to show the front label and another to show the part with the UPC with both connected through the snap ring/hicone.
      • Singles need either the flat-file package/label image or two images of the front and back of the container and a clear image of the UPC code.
  • Change Coding on Existing SKUs – send images of packaging and details of attribute(s) you wish to change.

ACA Welcomes New Certified Pommelier™, Industry Veteran Nicole LeGrand Leibon

The American Cider Association is thrilled to announce that Nicole LeGrand Leibon has passed the Certified Pommelier™ exam. Deeply experienced in cider, from orchard to package, Nicole has been there for industry growth from its modest beginnings to the juggernaut it is today. Nicole joined Farnum Hill Ciders and Poverty Lane Orchards in 2000, where she helped create a style that honored the terroir and the fruit, while gaining renown for the best ciders in America. In 2018, while finishing her 19th harvest at Farnum Hill Ciders, Nicole went on to expand her skills to distilling. She became the Assistant Distiller at SILO Distillery in Windsor, VT, as well as Head Cidermaker. Currently, Nicole is the cider blend consultant, LeNose Knows and a board member for the Cider Institute of North America (CINA). Nicole is the first person from Vermont to become a Certified Pommelier™.

The Certified Pommelier™ certification was developed to move beyond a fundamental understanding and to encourage cider professionals to think critically while demonstrating a higher understanding of the elements of cider. The rigorous test consists of five types of questions: short answer, fill in the blank, matching, essay and blind sensory (based on tasting). 

While the Certified Pommelier™ exam is designed to be challenging, the ACA is dedicated to making sure all of the information tested on is accessible for all who desire to learn. To that end, the ACA recently announced the release of their new textbook to help candidates prepare to take the exam with just one resource. Those interested in preparing for the exam can purchase the new textbook through Kindle Direct Publishing. In addition, sensory analysis practice webinars and a Facebook study group are continually being updated with resources for candidates studying for the exam. Links to all CCP resources can be found on the ACA’s website

The ACA has recently announced several new sensory analysis webinars and exams for those interested in pursuing their Certified Pommelier™ designation. Upcoming events include:

Contact the ACA’s Education Operations Manager Jennie Dorsey if you have questions about the Certified Cider Professional program or are interested in taking either the Level 1 or Certified Pommelier™ exams. You can also learn more at https://ciderassociation.org/certification


IWSC International Wine & Spirit Competition Applications Due June 7

This summer, the IWSC, in partnership with Cider Is Wine, is bringing its international drinks awards to Somerset, South West England, to judge cider, perry, and fruit wine made from 100% juice, not from concentrate.

Renowned for expertise, influence, and personal approach, the IWSC is proud to champion entrants from across the cider category.

Learn more and apply today: https://iwsc.net/alternative-drinks/cider