The beer market dynamics in Russia is approaching zero, yet major brewers are divided into those who developed considerably in 2017 and those who considerably reduced their volumes. For instance, company Efes has managed to substantially extend their sales due to restrained pricing policy and activity in the modern trade. Heineken has also demonstrated an excellent performance promoted by significant increase of advertisement budgets launching a non-alcohol sort of the title brand and unusual activity in the economy market segment. Carlsberg and AB InBev have been focusing on margins and lost a market share of their inexpensive brands. Serious dependence on PET package and mass enthusiasm about Zhigulevskoe have negatively impacted the most of big regional brewers, that have been for the first time pressed by the leaders in the key sales channels, especially in Volga and Central regions. In the small business there has been a noticeable slowdown in appearing of new restaurant breweries, yet the number of craft breweries has been growing rapidly. In 2018, the beer market is likely to grow a little, while the share of AB InBev Efes may decrease due to the integration. ...
“Catalogue of Russian Beer Producers 2018” includes 1070 businesses ranging from large subsidiaries of international companies to rather small restaurant and craft microbreweries.The catalogue includes 32 large breweries, 75 regional breweries, 693 industrial mini- and microbreweries as well as 270 restaurant breweries. ...
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.
India. Kingfisher turns to flavoured malts as beer sales stall
Faced with a prolonged slump in the demand for beer, United Breweries anticipates young drinkers, specially women, will spend more on malts and beers that are flavoured.
“There are enough young above-legal-age people who don’t like drinking beer,” said Samar Singh Sheikhawat, senior vice-president, marketing, United Breweries. “Say women—we have nothing in our portfolio that is for women.”
Indian liquor companies have been swiftly expanding their portfolio of alcopops, with rum and vodka makers such as Bacardi and Radico Khaitan Ltd adding flavours to low alcohol drinks that come in attractive bottles. Still, it’s a fairly small category in India.
United Breweries, which makes more than half the beer sold in India, is trying to fend off rivals such as Carlsberg and AB InBev that have been gaining share in a market that has seen sluggish growth over the past few quarters.
The launch, its second in less than 12 months—it launched a premium version of its Kingfisher Max beer in March last year—is aimed at taking on the Bacardi Breezer. As it has done in markets in Europe, particularly the UK, Bacardi can be credited with building the alcopop segment in India.
“One brand has dominated the market for a decade, there has been no alternative,” added Sheikhawat. The planned alternative, Buzz, will for now be available in two flavours— lychee and berry—in Mumbai, Pune and Thane.
This so-called ready-to-drink, or RTD, market, dominated by Bacardi, is growing at 11-12% annually in India, with roughly two million cases sold every year, according to data sourced from Euromonitor.
Buzz will be made available across India over a period 12 months—the other priority markets are Delhi, Manipal, Chandigarh and Bengaluru. “We will go in markets where there is significant Breezer volume,” Sheikhawat said.
Industry experts reckoned that while the RTD category has been growing, not many companies have invested in it.
“While it is a growth category, specially among the young and affluent, it has inherent distribution challenges,” said a top industry executive who did not want to be named. “Also India is still a small in-home alcohol consumption market, a challenge that has stalled the growth of beer too. So not many companies have been able to persistently pursue the RTD category,” the person added.
In a recent move, United Spirits Ltd (now controlled by Diageo Plc.) rolled back its ready-to-drink brand Smirnoff Ice (a pre-mixed vodka drink) on account of “insufficient volumes”.
The rapid expansion of United Breweries’ portfolio comes at a time when volume growth for the beer industry in general has been tepid although alcohol consumption among Indians is increasing at a rapid pace.
In the first half of 2015, volumes for the beer industry dropped by 1% from the year ago period.
“The beer industry lacked lustre in the first half of the financial year with a 1% drop in volume,” United Breweries said in a statement to the BSE during its quarterly result announcement.
Volumes at United Breweries dropped by 2.4% in the quarter ended 30 September from the same period a year ago, even as margins expanded by 100 basis points on the back of price increases in select markets and stable input costs. One basis point is one-hundredth of a percentage point.
United Breweries’ move to launch more products comes at a time when AB InBev’s planned takeover of SABMiller is set to create the world’s largest beer company, which is likely to impact the dominance of large brewers globally, including in Asian and African markets.
“Yes we have been more aggressive in launching newer products, we have to grow the market,” Sheikhawat said.
20 Jan. 2016