Brewers hope football will boost beer sales

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15 Apr, 2012 Updated Sun 15 Apr 2012 12:45 CEST
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Despite Germans’ worldwide reputation as beer-slurping pub-goers, domestic beer sales have been declining for years - but brewers have a plan to change that.

German brewers are hoping to profit from the European Football Championships, set to start in Poland and the Ukraine in June, according to a story published by the Westdeutsche Allgemeine newspaper.

They are also praying for good weather, which would bring football fans outside to barbecue. That is usually accompanied by more beer consumption, the paper wrote.

Sales rose in 2006, when the Germans hosted football’s World Cup and brewers believe the European championship could produce similar results.

Despite the decline, Germany remains Europe’s biggest beer producer. There are 5,000 brands and 1,340 breweries, the paper reported.

Each year the average German drinks 107 litres of beer – but that pales when compared to the 151 litres chugged down in 1976. In 2010 - for the first time ever - total beer sales dipped below 100 million hectolitres. One hectolitre is equal to 100 litres.

Experts say Germans are drinking less beer due to “sociodemographic developments.” A society that is getting older tends to drink less and also in a different way, the paper wrote.

With the changing demographics, beer’s target group of those between 20 and 35 is reduced. Also people are more health-conscious, and when they drink, there’s a huge variety to choose from.

People can opt for sparkling wine in cans and cocktails in bottles, the story said.

What’s also making it tougher for producers is the merciless price war in the beer sector, which has resulted in slashed profit margins.

Still, brewers are optimistic that the upcoming football games and grilling season will help to raise their bottom line.

The Local/mw

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2012/04/15 12:45

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