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Global hop market

A 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 Russia

Germany 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.

Russia. Parliament backs beer sales restrictions

Russia's Parliament has backed a bill that will define beer as an alcoholic beverage for the first time, in a move that could prompt further sales restrictions for brewers.
Russia's State Duma passed the latest raft of proposals to restrict alcohol sales in a first reading this week. It means that beer is one step closer to being officially-listed as an alcoholic drink in the country.
If that happens, beer could be subject to similar sales restrictions as spirits. However, the Union of Russian Brewers is hopeful that beer will avoid some of the worst restrictions.
Alongside the move to reclassify beer, the current alcohol bill would also ban alcohol sales between the hours of 23:00 and 08:00 across Russia. Producers would also be banned from selling so-called long drinks, which excludes hard spirits, in packs of more than 330ml.
However, a Carlsberg spokesperson in Russia told just-drinks that the volume restriction would only apply to drinks of less than 7% abv and that beer has been exempted. Similarly, the night-time sales ban would only apply to beers of more than 5% abv.
With two more readings to go in the Duma, there also remains time for amendments to the current bill.
Perhaps more seriously for brewers, it is also thought possible that alcohol could be banned from sporting events in Russia. Meanwhile, all alcoholic drinks producers may have to begin printing health warnings on labels.
In January this year, after the proposals emerged, analyst group Sanford Bernstein said that the new restrictions would be "most likely incrementally negative but not material for the beer industry". Brewers have spent the last year digesting a three-fold tax hike on beer in Russia.
Carlsberg said in its full-year results statement this week that it expects Russia's beer market to return to growth in 2011. The market should expand by between 2% and 4% in volume, said the group, which owns the country's leading brewer, Baltika Breweries.
25 Фев. 2011



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