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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.

Anheuser-Busch taps into at-home draft beer market

Anheuser-Busch said today it rolled out a home draft system targeted to beer enthusiasts who want to tap draft beer from their refrigerators.

The Draftmark tap system, available only in the St. Louis market, holds one-gallon containers of beer that can be kept fresh for up to a month. According to directions from the Budweiser brewer, users charge the tap system’s battery, insert the pouring spout into the beer refill, place and rotate the beer refill into the tap system to lock into place, close the system and then pour.

The dispenser costs $50 and the beer refills — which are available in Budweiser, Bass pale ale and Shock Top Belgian White and each hold eleven 12-once servings — cost $14. The system is available at some Dierbergs, Schnucks, Shop 'n Save and Randall's stores in St. Louis and will become more widely available throughout St. Louis in February 2012.

I called A-B's Draftmark number, 1-877-97-DRAFT, to find out which 12 retailers are selling the Draftmark: Dierbergs in Brentwood and Ellisville; Schnucks in Des Peres, Chesterfield and on Butler Hill Road; Shop 'n Save in St. Charles and Ellisville; Randall's in Fairview Heights and on South Jefferson and Old Halls Ferry Road in St. Louis; Lukas Liquor in Ellisville; and Friar Tuck's in Crestwood.

“Our innovation team is continually experimenting with new beer styles, packaging and concepts, and we’re always looking for the next idea that meets an unmet consumer need,” said Pat McGauley, vice president of innovation at Anheuser-Busch.

What do you think about A-B's new Draftmark? Is this something you'll be buying for Christmas presents? Or will you stick to bottles and old-fashioned kegs instead?

15 Dec. 2011



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