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. Liquor ban: Why total prohibition will not work in Tamil Nadu
For the majority of voters – those below the poverty line – nothing good came of alcohol except the ability to forget, and that applies only to the drinkers. Families have been ruined by drinkers. Savings are eaten up by them, spouses and children have been beaten and killed by them.
The TASMAC outlets have been a nuisance to the residential neighbourhoods in which they have cropped up since their inception. We have learned to avert our eyes and circle around the bars to avoid rowdy drinkers, we have learned to drive with special caution around them to avoid suicidal drinkers, we have learned to hold our hands over our noses as we pass them to avoid nauseated drinkers. It would be rather convenient for most people if the TASMAC outlets were to go.
But is total prohibition the solution?
In a state which has severe restrictions on liquor – it is perhaps the only one where liquor is sold, but cannot be bought off the shelves of a supermarket – total prohibition will affect people across socioeconomic classes.
Let us acknowledge that social drinking is a legitimate pastime. For some reason, in India, alcohol is only associated with addiction, and never recreation. It is nonsensical to declare alcohol evil and call for a complete ban. Some of us do enjoy a few drinks, without making public nuisances of ourselves, and without endangering the lives of ourselves and others.
As for those addicted to alcohol, total prohibition will only boost the manufacture of spurious liquor. We can expect the dreaded news items every week, about tens blinded or killed by these noxious brews. When Jayalalithaa gave the state government a monopoly on liquor sales, she announced that the spur to do so came from these deaths and debilitations.
Handily enough, TASMAC went on to boost the government’s income exponentially over the decade and a half since its creation. With nearly 7000 outlets and about half as many licensed bars working twelve hours a day until last year, and eight hours a day since, TASMAC sales account for nearly Rs 30,000 crore. From a contribution of Rs 3639.93 to the state’s kitty in 2003-04, its share of the state’s revenue in 2015-16 has grown to more than a quarter.
How will the government make up for the enormous income deficit the expulsion of TASMAC will cause? It will be forced to raise various taxes, and introduce new ones. And while it may be argued that it is the citizens who pay for alcohol, we must acknowledge that there is an active choice involved. To force those who do not drink to make up for the prospective loss of state income is unlikely to be a populist move.
Prohibition has been introduced twice before in the state, and has not worked.
It will not stop anyone from drinking. Those who can afford it will begin to cross state borders to get hold of their drinks. And those who cannot afford it will lay their hands on whatever intoxicants they can find, courting disastrous results. Even with TASMAC outlets in place, National Crime Records Bureau data shows that 1509 deaths occurred between 2005 and 2015 from consumption of illicit arrack in Tamil Nadu. These figures are likely to rise if the TASMAC stores do vanish.
What will work far better is to reduce the working hours of TASMAC shops and remove the bars attached to them. Drinking outside private houses or establishments can be banned, in order to avoid drunken overtures on roads.
If the government does want to play parent and discipline its citizens, it would do a lot better to start off with cigarettes. Despite restrictions on public smoking, one can rarely walk the length of a street without smelling cigarettes and biris. Cigarettes are sold everywhere, though they have been proven to affect not just active consumers but those coerced into passive consumption by dint of passing by. And the health hazards associated with cigarettes tend to set in far faster than those associated with alcohol.
20 Apr. 2016