Global hop marketA 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 RussiaGermany 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.
10+1 trends of Russian beer market 2015-2017Despite of the moderately negative prognoses for 2017, the beer market can be stabilized soon. Yet the years of the negative dynamics have resulted in marketing being limited just to “optimization” and the art of balancing between price and volumes. Bigger supermarkets share means stronger trade marketing. These processes are connected to the majority of the described trends. At the same time, the federal brands inflation leads to searching for new tastes, sales channels and contact formats that expand the product range and diversify the beer market, but do not imply a substantial volume increase. Let us enumerate and further discuss the ten trends of the beer market we can see in 2015-2017 as well as the major event of 2017.
Beer market of Ukraine 2017In the first half of 2017, the Ukrainian beer market goes on decreasing slowly. Yet, the companies manage to compensate their lost volumes by raising prices and improving the sales structures. This results in the mid price market segment reduction while the sales of premium brands are rising. These processes are connected to position strengthening of companies Carlsberg Group and Oasis and the market share reduction of Obolon. Most of the novelties by the market leaders belong to craft or hard lemon categories.
Beer market of Russia 2016: PET goes to draftThe beer market of Russia was warmed up by the hot summer, but the preparation for large volume PET prohibition has already impacted it negatively. The year was successful for Efes, MBC and regional producers; Carlsberg’s positions were virtually stable but AB InBev and Heineken lost a part of market share having focused on the sales profitability. The dynamics of big brands was determined by how much the companies were willing to keep the prices down or by their promotional activity. In this context the economy segment of the beer market and sales of inexpensive draft beer were increasing. The premium segment started shrinking due to license brands migrating to the mainstream segment.
Molson Coors to refresh beer market with Carling revamp
The brewer hopes the changes will boost the number of pints sold a year to 2 billion within the next three years. About 1.3 billion pints were sold in pubs and clubs last year, it says.
In terms of value and volume, the brewer claims data shows that Carling is the UK’s biggest brand in the on- and off-trade. However, an increase in choice and marketing activity from rivals has hit the brand’s share of the market.
Chris McDonough, marketing director for Molson Coors in the UK and Ireland, says the relaunch aims to make up ground lost to rivals such as Foster’s and Stella Artois.
“Our aim is to bring it back to being a confident and proud category leader,” he adds.
A new strapline, ’Refreshingly and Brilliantly British’ is being introduced that aims to celebrate British culture and people, says the company. The brewer wants to soften what many perceive to be its laddish positioning in the hope of broadening its appeal.
The relaunch also includes a new packaging format - an aluminium bottle. A new sub-brand, Carling Chrome, will launch from late August. The drink is lighter and less bitter than the master brand Carling. At 4.8% ABV, Chrome will be positioned as a premium drink with a “refined taste”.
A TV campaign, created by VCCP Blue and breaking in September, will back the revamp, and marketing activity will make greater use of digital channels.
The aim of Carling’s new positioning and the launch of Carling Chrome is to re-energise the declining beer category.
On-trade sales fell 7.6% in 2010, according to the British Beer and Pub Association, while the World Cup helped lift sales in the off-trade by 3%, according to Nielsen.
Unlike rival AB-Inbev, Molson Coors does not plan to diversify into other categories such as cider; it says it remains committed to growing the beer category through innovation.
Molson Coors chief executive Mark Hunter says: “Consumers have become disengaged by the beer category as they perceive it as dull and lacking excitement. The industry is under great strain, but if beer can meet consumers’ needs and become more relevant it will help stimulate growth again.
“Molson Coors has a strong and growing portfolio of beers and we continue to invest in order to improve brand health and generate excitement in the category.”
A late summer brand awareness campaign for Carling Chrome, also created by VCCP Blue, will be followed by TV activity in January.
8 Aug. 2011