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4-2017

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.

South Korea. Turns out, beer goes pretty well with K-pop

South Korean brewers are increasingly shifting their focus to other Asian markets, hoping to cash in on the popularity of Korean culture and make up for stagnant growth at home.

0913-korean-beer_article_main_image

Oriental Brewery, a unit of the world's largest beer maker, Anheuser-Busch InBev, has been increasing exports by over 10% every year since 2011. Oriental used to mainly make and export other companies' brands of beer. Today, it is exporting more of its own suds, such as Cass and Premier OB.

Exports have grown thanks to the hit of South Korean TV drama "My Love from the Star." The series attracted many viewers across Asia and introduced the culture of enjoying beer with chicken, which boosted exports, an Oriental representative said.

According to the Korea Customs Service, brewers exported $84.4 million worth of beer in 2015, up 16.9% from 2013. Between January and July, shipments rose 3.7% from the same period last year. Though relatively small in size, South Korea's beer market is showing remarkable growth as the country's overall exports slump due to stagnant shipping, steel and other heavy industries.

Hong Kong is the top importer of South Korean beer, accounting for about 40% of the total, partly because the region has no beer tariff. China, Iraq, Singapore, the U.S. and Japan follow in the ranking.

Malaysia, Vietnam and other Southeast Asian countries are importing more South Korean beer. In these countries, hallyu, or Korean wave, culture still has much appeal to consumers. Hitejinro, which sells Hite beer, considers these markets strategically important and has been riding the Korean wave to them.

20160913koreabeerbar_middle_320Hitejinro uses Ha Jung-woo, a popular South Korean actor, to promote its products. Hitejinro's exports to Southeast Asia rose more than fivefold to $7.61 million in 2015 compared to 2013.

South Korean beer is known for having little body. A media says it is worse than beer made in North Korea. It is not alone in its dislike of the stuff.

Most South Korean beer has low malt. In Japan, for instance, at least two-thirds of the content has to be malt for the product to be sold as beer.

However, the bad reputation associated with South Korean beer has been more than offset by the Korean wave.

Lotte Chilsung Beverage, which entered the domestic beer market in 2014 with Kloud, a full-malt beer, has been busy keeping up with rising demand at home. It is also eager to join the competition outside South Korea.

14 Сен. 2016

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