AB InBev-owned Carlton & United Breweries has launched its first-ever hard seltzer beverage, which will be released through its new Actual brand in Australia.

Two varieties of Actual Vodka Seltzer have been released, Pure and Lime. Pure has no sugar and just 65 calories per serving, while Lime is ‘low in sugar’ and contains 69 calories per can.

According to Carlton & United Breweries, the drink is one of the lowest-calorie ready-to-drink vodkas on the Australian market, and is made with 100% natural ingredients to a vegan recipe.

Hard seltzer is alcoholic, low-calorie sparkling water.

Carlton & United Breweries has predicted that this growth will be replicated in the Australian market, and that the new Actual brand will be able to meet this demand.

Research provided by Carlton & United Breweries claims that Australian consumers are increasingly looking for beverages which promote a ‘cleaner’ lifestyle, with 54% of Australian shoppers looking for “low sugar” products on the shelves and 32% of shoppers looking for “low calorie”.

Actual senior marketing manager Marc Lord said: “The hard seltzer market grew from nothing to become a multi-billion-dollar business in just five years in the United States. This is the next big thing here in Australia, and that’s why Carlton & United Breweries created Actual.

“Australians are also becoming increasingly conscious of what they are drinking, so we think the boom will be repeated here.”

Lord continued: “Actual is a simple drink of sparkling water and vodka, which results in low calories and low or no sugar. We know consumers needs are evolving faster than ever before, and we’re right there with them. Consumers are seeking lighter, more refreshing styles of alcoholic drinks. They still want to have a drink, but they don’t want the sugar or added ingredients.”