Global Beer Sales Drying Up, Says Report

Global Beer Sales Drying Up, Says Report

People are drinking fewer alcoholic drinks, according to a new industry report tracking consumption worldwide.

Beer sales continued to slide last year and the trend towards cider sipping stalled.

The global market for all alcoholic drinks contracted 1.3% in 2016, driven by a 1.8% fall in beer sales, the International Wine and Spirits Record (IWSR) found.

Cider sales went in reverse, down 1.5% after several years of growth.

The overall contraction of international alcohol sales is far greater than the average dip of 0.3% in the previous five years.

The IWSR market report for 2016 found global wine sales to be relatively flat, down 0.1% and spirits consumption grew 0.3%.

UK gin makers could be boosted as the so-called gin revival continued, with sales of the iconic British tipple up 3.7% globally.

Although global GDP increased 3.5% in 2016, according to the IMF, and economic growth usually correlates with increased alcohol consumption several major economies, China, Russia and Brazil all faced an economic slowdown or recession.

Beer sales in China fell 4.2%, were down 5.3% in Brazil and dipped 7.8% in Russia.

In Uganda, the beer market is equally tough. Speaking to the Independent Magazine early in May, Greg Metcalf of Nile Breweries Limited said “the market has been very tough especially in 2016 since the election.”

“People tend to believe beer is bullet proof that people will drink anyway but that is not true, that is just urban legend. The reality is that when times are tough and money is short, beer is the first thing you are going to cut back on,” he added.

“Affordable beers are the most susceptible to economic constraints. That is because consumers of affordable beers are the ones with less money. When the economy is tough they are the ones who tend to migrate back to informal alcohol. That migration is bad for the business, but it’s also bad for the country.

In 2015 government raised excise duty on affordable beer from 20% to 30% which made the beer just on the edge of affordability for these consumers especially in a tough year.

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