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.
India. Women’s Day Special: Meet the girls who brew your beer
Most Indians still see beer as a man’s drink. A friend of mine recently went to a restaurant in Salem, Tamil Nadu, along with his wife, and they ordered two bottles of beer. The restaurant staffer, though, served both the bottles to him (my friend). Thankfully, our metros are more progressive when it comes to beer, and the craft beer scene, especially, has a fair number of women actually brewing beer thousands of guys — and girls — glug every weekend.
Most Indians also wouldn’t be aware that Sumerians from southern Mesopotamia, the first people to document the recipe for beer, worshipped Ninkasi, who was their goddess of beer. A hymn to Ninkasi goes like this: “Ninkasi, you are the one who pours out the filtered beer of the collector vat; it is [like] the onrush of the Tigris and Euphrates.” It was believed that Ninkasi gifted beer to humans to preserve peace and well being. Beer only became a preserve of men with the advent of the Industrial Revolution. Prior to that, women were active players, brewing beer and heading guilds.
While the majority of brewpubs in India are male-dominated, there are a bunch of ladies, who brew some excellent stuff.
Ashwini Rajagopal, head brewer, TJ’s Brew Works, Pune
On how she got into the craft beer industry: I’ve always loved beer, and have been around beer and brewing since I was 17. I started out as a trainee with Mohan Breweries, in Chennai, and have worked with UB and SAB Miller. I then graduated in industrial biotechnology, and further training in Scotland helped me further understand the technical and managerial aspects of brewing. And, that lead me to TJ’s.
On what she enjoys most about her job: It’s total fun giving birth, so to speak, to India Pale Ales, porters, stouts and blondes. And, for someone who’s been around in the industry for half a decade, it’s great to see more and more women join it.
On the challenges she has faced pursuing her passion: I come from an orthodox community, and getting around them was one of my biggest challenges. But, that didn’t stop me from achieving from what I wanted to do. Brewing is a lot of physical work. One also has to strategise mentally every day; it’s not just about the beer, but about the entire brewing unit, and you have to have a well thought-out plan. Of course, men do the same, too, but the bunch of women who are doing it in India are doing it after overcoming social and religious taboos.
On what she likes to drink/brew? To drink: TJ’s Bock brew, it’s nice and full-bodied, with hints of toffee and malt. To brew: I love all beers, but I lean towards Lambics and Sours.
Vidya Khuber, head brewer, Big Brewsky, Bengaluru
On how she got into the craft beer industry: It started with drinking beer. It was my beverage of choice. I also travelled to Europe and spent time at breweries there to gauge my passion for the craft, and I was hooked. My formal exposure has been a Master Brewer Certificate from Siebel Institute and Doemens Academy, in Chicago, US, and I interned at a few Bavarian breweries before joining Big Brewsky.
On what she enjoys most about her job: Every single aspect, whether it’s hops, malt, yeast or water. Each in itself is so interesting, especially when you think about all of it coming together in a brew. So, a day at work for me is like what a round of golf might be to some.
On the challenges she has faced pursuing her passion: Getting past my parents’ concerns about entering the “alcohol world” was difficult. But the brewing fraternity stretches across borders and is always of great help and support. On what she likes to drink/brew? To drink: Saison, Kellerbier, Gose. To brew: Belgian-style ales.
Varsha Bhat, assistant brewer, The Barking Deer, Mumbai
On how she got into the craft beer industry: I was always interested in beer, and always reached out to people in the industry to get a sense of what I had to do to get into it. That’s what The Barking Deer happened. (The Barking Deer, which opened in 2013, was Mumbai’s first micro-brewery.)
On what she enjoys most about her job: For me, beer is a way of life. It’s a complete experience, if you think about it. It’s sweet, bitter and sour, just like life.
On the challenges she has faced pursuing her passion: Most people don’t know that in ancient times, it was women who brewed beer, while the men went hunting. Craft beer in India is still a male-dominated industry, but that doesn’t mean women can’t do better than men.
On what she likes to drink/brew? To drink: India Pale Ales. To brew: I like traditional beer, but experimenting with different styles and processes is one of the many challenges I love. I love working on Wits, IPAs, stouts, bitters and sours.
11 Mar. 2016