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Global hop market

A local alternative to mass beer suggested by independent brewers has been successful and is now altering the global market. Beer is becoming more diversified, so transnational companies have to accept the new game rules and to switch focus to young and fast growing markets. All these processes increased the demand for aroma and bitter hop as well as their acreage expansion on two continents. However now there appeared a downward trend of alcohol consumption in the world, so even special sorts can soon turn to be sufficient. In this connection the dynamic American hop market is already facing some problems. EU hop producers have become more cautious, they are not racing to exceed the demand and look forward with more confidence, judging by the contract terms. 

Hop Market in Russia

Germany still dominates the Russian market, yet over the recent two years one has been able observe a continuous success of Czech hop suppliers. Their expansion and growing popularity of hops from the United States became the drivers of supplies growth in 2016 despite the preceding modest harvest crop in the EU, as well as the factor of relative stability in 2017. In this connection, in 2017, the ratio of the varieties continued to shift towards the aroma ones, and the supplies of Magnum hop and other alpha varieties were reduced. However, the import of bitter hop pellets is partially replaced by extracts, especially from the major beer manufacturers. Total volumes of alpha acid supplies, according to our estimation, decreased by approximately 5% and returned to the level of 2015. Barth Haas Group continues dominating the hop products market; HVG also increased its weight. At the same time, Morris Hanbury significantly reduced the supplies in 2017.

US. Wisconsin Gov. Walker doesn’t veto beer provision

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker didn’t veto a controversial provision in the state budget that bans beer brewers from owning distributorships and taverns in the state.

The budget signed June 26 by Walker contains a proposal that combines the brewer’s permit and wholesale and retail licenses into a single permit under state — not municipal — control that effectively bans brewers from having ownership stakes in wholesale distributors. Under the current law, brewers must obtain three separate licenses — a brewer’s permit, a wholesaler’s license and retail license.

The legislation prohibits wholesale distributors from investing in a brewery, but grandfathers in any existing deals. Breweries that produce fewer than 300,000 barrels of beer each year can sell their own product without a distributor.

Follow this company from buying wholesale distributors in Wisconsin. The vote sends a strong message to the nation’s dominant brewer, which has been pursuing a national agenda to develop so-called brewery branches throughout the country, backers of the provision said.

Chicago-based MillerCoors operates a major brewery and administrative offices on Milwaukee’s west side and is Anheuser-Busch’s main rival in the U.S. market.

However, many of the state’s craft brewers have voiced opposition to the measure, claiming that the current system has helped foster their growth.

In a letter to Walker, the president of the Wisconsin Brewer’s Guild, Jeff Hamilton, said that policy changes inserted into the state budget “seriously impair our existing and future small breweries from meeting our goals, and will likely cause the loss of jobs here in Wisconsin.”

Legislators were misled by proponents of theses changes who assured them that small brewers would be unaffected by or exempt from these changes and that such legislation is needed to ward off a threat from Anheuser-Busch, he said.

“These are simply not true. In fact, small brewers were the only segment of the industry that were harmed by this policy change and are subject to radical changes in the way we do business,” wrote Hamilton, who is president of Sprecher Brewing Co. Sprecher Brewing Co.

“Several business models that have been available to us since we started our businesses, since the end of Prohibition for that matter, have been swiftly removed as options for business growth. All of these options are being used successfully in various parts of the nation, adding to the explosive craft brewing growth.”

A bipartisan group of more than 20 lawmakers urged Walker to veto the proposal over concerns about the impact on the state’s more than 60 craft brewers.

MillerCoors didn’t return a call seeking comment.

28 Jun. 2011

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