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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.

A vision of the future or a present reality?

RASTAL presents the latest dimension in "smart" glasses
Digitalisation in business is picking up speed. Open to new digital ideas, RASTAL is launching the RASTAL SMARTGLASS® in co-operation with Telekom Deutschland GmbH at the Brau-Beviale 2016 trade show, demonstrating completely new approaches to customer involvement, competition differentiation and the promotion of consumption.

The focus here is not on enjoyment, but rather on data that can be obtained in a bar, self-service or restaurant and that can be con-trolled from anywhere. With the RASTAL SMARTGLASS®, the Höhr-Grenzhausen-based traditional company has created a pioneering concept for drinks companies that conveys certain information via the glass. At the heart of this development is a coded chip. This chip, which takes the form of an integrated ring in the customer's corporate design, is barely noticeable on the glass and works with any glass type. The chip is fixed to the stem or base in such a way that the glass is dishwasher-safe. The RASTAL SMARTGLASS® can be individually developed for every customer.

In order to transform the valuable information gathered into com-mercial data, RASTAL has recruited Telekom Deutschland GmbH as a cooperative partner. "This technology will be of interest to all drinks companies because it points the way to the future in digital networking. The RASTAL SMARTGLASS® puts us in a pioneering position and, with our partner Telekom Deutschland GmbH on board, enables us to offer a complete solution unlike any other," says Thomas Nieraad, CEO of RASTAL.

4b58aaf05f7662a94f685e51ac3886dbcd26662efe2e32c142pimgpsh_fullsize_distrRASTAL will showcase the world première of this new technology at the trade fair and will have its own smartbar using RASTAL SMART-GLASS® in a Telekom Deutschland GmbH design. Three reading stations will explain to visitors the principle of a digital counter using the smart glasses with the chip on the base and the "cloud of things". The Internet of Things (IoT) platform gathers sensor data and evaluates and visualises it. A special mobile gateway is registered and configured in the "cloud of things", reads the machine data and sends it to the cloud, where it is displayed in the dashboard. "The drinks manufacturer can learn about the amount of beer consumed in a particular bar in real time, or can communicate with the restaurateur and launch a competition with the glasses in real time", says Carsten Kehrein, explaining the advantages. The concept is designed in such a way that a mobile payment option would be possible in the future. The smartbar itself needs just one power socket to be fully functional.

In addition, RASTAL and Telekom Deutschland GmbH are also pre-senting a second idea at the trade fair: an app with competition and rewards elements. An NFC-enabled mobile phone is used to read the chip on the stem of the glass using the special app. In the future, it will be possible to use the so-called WhiteLabelApp, which can be applied to any industry thanks to a modular concept, with specific logos across on all platforms. Telekom offers almost unlimited possibilities for the development of an individual app with loyalty points and competitions.

The benefits of RASTAL SMARTGLASS® are obvious: greater economic plannability, real-time consumption and more detailed consumption data enable optimum customer retention. The data gathered makes it easier to plan for the future because information can be retrieved in real-time, for example how many drinks are served. Guests can experience more application options, such as competitions and promotions thanks to the intelligent glass. RASTAL has once again created an innovative solution that transforms glasses into something special, offering customers genuine added value.

23 Ноя. 2016



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