UK Beer Market Insights 2013




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Product Synopsis

A detailed market research report on the UK beer industry. Researched and published by Canadean.

Introduction and Landscape

Why was the report written?

This report comprises high level market research data on the UK beer industry, published by Canadean. The report covers total market (on- and off-premise) and includes valuable insight and analysis on beer market trends, brands, brewers, packaging, distribution channels, market valuation and pricing. 

What is the current market landscape and what is changing?

The year had started with expectations high, with a high profile European Football Tournament, the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and the Olympics. These events had a muted impact however, and sales volumes fell in every quarter of 2012. A deterioration in demand at Christmas capped another disappointing year. The tax cut on 2.8% Abv beer has prompted a surge in sales of lower Abv beers.

What are the key drivers behind recent market changes?

The Duty rise of 5% was expected but what could not be legislated for were the appalling weather conditions that plagued the country during much of the summer. The impact significantly lowered refreshment requirements and was as instrumental in pushing down consumption as the stagnant economy.

What makes this report unique and essential to read?

The UK Beer Market Insight report is designed for clients needing a quality in-depth understanding of the dynamics and structure of the Beer market. The report provides a much more granular and detailed data set than our competitors. All data has been researched, brand upwards, by an experienced 'on-the-ground' industry analyst who conducts face-to-face interviews with key producers, leading companies in allied industries, distributors and retailers.

Key Features and Benefits

  • This report provides readers with an excellent way of gaining a thorough understanding of the dynamics and structure of the UK Beer industry. Data includes volumes from 2008 to 2012 plus forecasts for 2013, enabling historical and current trend analysis.
  • This report provides readers with in-depth market segmentation: mainstream, premium, super premium, discount, alcoholic strength, local segmentation, beer type.
  • This report provides data and analysis of the performance of both domestic and imported brands and reports on new product activity in 2012.
  • This report provides an analysis of industry structure, reports on company volumes and contains brewer profiles for major brewers.
  • This report provides distribution channel data (on- vs off-premise) and discusses the latest trends in the key sub-channels. Packaging data includes consumption volumes by pack material, type, size, refillable vs non-refillable, multi-serve vs single serve. Market valuation data and pricing data, including beer consumption by price segment/distribution channel and selected consumer beer prices are also included.

Key Market Issues

  • The year began with some optimism that the European Football championships, the Jubilee celebrations, and the Olympics might provoke a slowdown in the rate of beer decline. What could not be legislated for however, were the appalling weather conditions that plagued the country during much of the summer.
  • Losses from the big brands are prompting a cider rush with brewers now looking to move into the cider market.
  • A healthier consumer with more cosmopolitan tastes has emerged in recent years, prompting a shift to wine and other alcoholic markets. Consumers have become more adventurous with their refreshment choices, and importantly, consumers seem to be spending more on their beer but drinking less of it.
  • In 2013 the threat of minimum pricing in England and Wales was lifted for the short-term when a proposed level of 0.45 was sidelined. In Scotland it is another matter: the 0.50 minimum price per unit is on course to be implemented.
  • After the double digit gains of 2011, imports into the UK fell back last year. Many imported beers are sold in supermarkets and will have been affected by the downturn in the off-premise.

Key Highlights

  • Foster's is the new number one UK brand but the key story of 2012 has been the performance of the top ten UK beer brands, which all contracted during the twelve months.
  • The intense lobbying to end the Duty Escalator was rewarded in 2013 when the government, perhaps influenced by the depressed state of the industry in 2012 and falling revenues, opted to end the unpopular measure.
  • The tax cut on 2.8% Abv beer has prompted a surge in sales of lower Abv beers. Some companies launched new products while others like Carlsberg lowered the Abv of existing brands, such as Skol, to capitalize on the lower price.
  • Microbrewers continue to flourish on the declining big brands. The microbrewery boom continued unabated in 2012 as the tax differential helps them compete favorably with bigger producers.
  • Curry house brand Cobra Beer was helped by a 4 m campaign in 2012 and responded with some growth - the move was part funded by a drop in Abv to 4.8%. The future brings an interesting duel with rival Kingfisher, which will now be marketed and distributed by Heineken UK.