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.
Myanmar. Trouble Brewing Over Tuborg Terminology
The beloved tune, written by Mandalay’s Myoma Nyein, has become synonymous with Thingyan, the water festival celebrating the Burmese New Year. The title, Tupo, was derived from the sound of Burmese drums and gongs played throughout the holiday. The well-known musician was surprised last year when, sometime in April, a new beer was being advertised with an uncanny name.
In English you might know it as Tuborg, a Danish brew owned by the Carlsberg Group. As Myoma Nyein’s family recalls, the company had approached the family to discuss using the name of the song as the transliterated version of their brand. The family says they met with representatives of Carlsberg Myanmar four times since 2014, and every time the family said no.
“I always denied them the use of the name ‘Tupo’,” said Shwun Myaing, Myoma Nyein’s son, speaking to reporters in Mandalay on Friday. “I asked them after our last meeting, and their brand manager said they would not begin production and they would try to meet with us again.”
The family alleged that the company’s advertising used the name Tu Po to capitalize on the song’s popularity around the beer’s launch, which coincided with the festival. Later in 2015, they said, cans and bottles were produced with labels reading “Tu Po Beer.”
The Burmese script on the product and the advertising is identical to the song title, which the family took issue with, especially because there is a Burmese character sounding more like the Roman letter “b,” which they believed would make for a more accurate transliteration.
“They could have spelled it in Burmese using ‘Bo’ instead of ‘Po,’ but they just used the well-known ‘Tu Po’ to win over the market,” Shwun Myaing said, “especially around Thingyan. If they did it by mistake, that would be forgivable. But they met with us, and despite our disapproval, they used it anyway.”
The family said they plan to notify the Carlsberg Group’s Rangoon Office with an ultimatum: Change the spelling within one week, or face the courts. Admittedly, an intellectual property case against an international corporation in a country with loose laws might not be much of a threat, but Myoma Nyein’s family wanted to make sure their point was heard.
“Since we don’t have a proper copyright law, we know we’re going to lose the case,” said Zaw Myo Oo, the songwriter’s grandson, “but we are doing this for every Burmese person losing their copyright due to a lack of rule of law.”
Myoma Nyein’s fans have also chimed in on the Tu Po debacle, overwhelmingly to his defense. Theik Tun Thet, a respected Mandalay author and a devotee of the songwriter, said that the company, Carlsberg, “surely knew that they would have problems” if they used the name Tu Po.
“That’s why they met with Myoma Nyein’s sons,” he said.
“If they were being honest, they wouldn’t transliterate it as Tu Po, which is pronounced completely different [from Tuborg],” he added. “Now Myoma Nyein’s song is the name of a beer, and Thingyan festival will seem like a beer-drinking festival.”
When contacted by The Irrawaddy on Friday, Carlsberg Myanmar marketing director Birgette Weeke said the upset was the result of a misunderstanding.
“It’s quite late to do the changes as it has been on the market for a long time,” Weeke said. “However, we never wanted to offend anybody, so we will contact the family immediately to resolve the matter and, of course, we will take any appropriate action.”
18 Jan. 2016