Germany: Decline in January-March exports leads to 7.4% slump in total beer sales
Germanys consumption of alcohol-free beer and other non-taxable malt drinks was 6.7 mln hl in 2019, a minus of 0.2%, H. M. Gauger GmbH reported.
Beer sales in January-March 2020 were 19.7 mln hl, of which in March 6.8 mln hl.
In January-March as well as in March alone domestic consumption shows a surprisingly low minus of 0.2%, but the losses in export shipments led to a 7.4% decline in sales in January-March, of which 14.4% in March.
The lock-down of the country started in the last week of March. It affected first of all the on-market (gastronomy), which represents only 18% of Germanys beer sales. Retail beer sales in bottles and cans increased remarkably. In April as well, the off-trade compensated for part of the losses in the gastronomy/tourism sector. Already for May and more so for summer beer sales prospects are pessimistic.
Malt production still continued at a high level, but now call-offs are slowing down fast, and silos are filling up. Export shipments to Latin America and Southeast Asia are disappointingly slow. The malt industry reports: production is reduced or idled where necessary, to avoid costly stocks and ensuing pressure on price levels. The delayed call-offs for 2020 will, of course, lead to a smaller malt sales volume for 2021.
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