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.
SABMiller says a minimum price for alcohol will hit low-income, responsible drinkers
Pointing to statistics which show that high-income consumers are the most likely to regularly drink more alcohol than the Government’s recommended weekly limit, SABMiller said a minimum price of 45p per unit would impact on lower-income responsible drinkers more.
Research looking at different types of drinker shows that:
The bottom 30 percent of households according to income (up to ?14,378 a year), have the greatest proportion of moderate drinkers1. This group tends to buy cheaper products and will be most affected by minimum pricing.
The top 20 percent (?61,958+ a year) have the greatest proportion of hazardous and harmful drinkers, yet this group spends, on average, over ?0.70 per unit of alcohol2.
The heaviest drinkers are the least responsive to changes in price3. A minimum price of 45p would lead a hazardous drinker to reduce their intake by roughly a pint of beer a week (2.7 units).
Hazardous drinkers are defined by the Government as men who drink 22-50 units a week and women who drink 15-35 units, while harmful drinkers are defined as those who drink over 50 units (for men) and over 35 (for women).
SABMiller urges the Government to look at better targeted policies which would genuinely help harmful and hazardous drinkers. Mike Short, SABMiller’s Senior Vice President of Industry Affairs, said:
“There’s a lot in the Government’s alcohol strategy which we agree with, for example local authorities being given more power to deal with anti-social drinking and a greater focus on targeted prevention programmes. As a brewer we also recognise the importance of our role in promoting sensible drinking, particularly when it comes to the responsible marketing of our products. However, we cannot support an unfair and ineffective policy which will be yet another tax on low-income responsible drinkers.”
In addition to concerns about its effectiveness as a policy, SABMiller also believes that government intervention in the market will have a number of unintended consequences for consumers. Gary Haigh, Managing Director of Miller Brands, SABMiller’s subsidiary company in the UK, said:
“If minimum pricing comes in, consumers, particularly those with a limited budget, will be faced with far less choice when they look at the supermarket shelves. ‘Own label’ products are likely to disappear because they can’t compete at the same price against branded products and producers who import into the UK could pull out because it’s no longer a competitive market. It could also make things even worse for our great British pub heritage. It’s already been badly affected by the trend towards at-home drinking and if people have a set budget they’ll have less to spend in the pub.”
Analysis by the Centre for Business and Economics Research using the Office of National Statistics General Lifestyle and Family Expenditure surveys.
London Economics, Differential Price Responsiveness among Drinker Types (a review of all public-health funded research published on the subject)
29 Nov. 2012