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Moves by alcohol producers to switch production to help combat the coronavirus pandemic is tapping into consumer demand to see companies do their bit.

As COVID-19 has spread, drinks companies have been queuing up to produce alcohol that can be used to make hand sanitiser. The likes of Anheuser-Busch InBev, Bacardi, Diageo and Pernod Ricard have all trumpeted their efforts in recent weeks.

The crisis has created an unprecedented level of uncertainty and anxiety among society. Now, for many FMCG companies, supporting society at many different levels has become hugely important, even more than before, in order to resonate with consumers and overcome the crisis.

According to GlobalData's latest COVID-19 tracker consumer survey, half of the consumers in the 11 countries surveyed would like to hear news about initiatives adopted by brands during the coronavirus pandemic period.

Earlier this week, Suntory was the latest company to announce plans to start supplying neutral alcohol to hospitals and healthcare facilities from its distillery in Osaka. Following the outbreak in Europe and the US, Japan is now facing a surge of increasing cases and has extended the state of emergency from Tokyo and selected prefectures to the entire country.

As the country approaches a crucial stage in the COVID-19 outbreak, consumers' anxiety will rise significantly. Initiatives introduced by major companies such as Suntory will not only be one of the key activities for the country to ride out the crisis, they will also chime with consumers' heightened expectations of businesses.

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