Following a decline in beer consumption due to still wine, total volume sales of beer recorded double-digit growth in 2021, with a solid rebound in bars and restaurants, and considerable off-premise growth. Off-premise sales increased due to a strong pressure to discount driven by the government price control programme, “Precios Cuidados”, which benefited beer multinationals to compete fiercely with the wine industry.
The beer industry saw the introduction of origin beers, a variety that brings to the fore its place of creation and the characteristics and ingredients that define it. For instance, Salta Cautiva was launched by Cía Cervecerias Unidas SA in August 2021, whilst in November 2021, Cerveceria y Maltería Quilmes SA introduced Quilmes Doble Malta, a pilsener lager beer produced with two local malts and presented in 410ml aluminium cans and 1-litre glass bottles.
Since the beginning of the quarantine period due to COVID-19, the consumption of beer in aluminium cans has boomed and emerged as a key strategic packaging type in beer. This movement was driven by a massive shortage of glass bottles due to a lack of supplies to manufacture glass bottles since suppliers notably reduced their inventory during the pandemic.
During COVID-19 pandemic, beer consumption and the consumer experience shifted from brew pubs, discos and restaurants to home consumption, and the sector revitalised as restrictions on circulation introduced in late 2020 began to be phased out. The current period saw a shift back in favour of on-trade volume sales of alcoholic drinks, but the outbreak of the third wave of COVID-19 at the end of 2021 will increase home seclusion and fuel off-premise consumption again in 2022.
Due to economic instability in the country, beer sales are expected to record slowed growth in the coming years, with a clear movement to more affordable beer packs and formats. “Smart affordability” is another critical pillar of the category’s expansion as price is a major barrier to entering the beer category for many consumers, such as returnable single-serve bottles (340ml glass bottles), single-serve aluminium cans, and value-driven 1-litre bottles.
Cerveceria y Maltería Quilmes SA is focused on developing outside the beer market following the recent acquisition of Dante Robino winery and the distribution alliance with Bodegas Cuvellier in cider/perry at the beginning of 2021. As a result, it is expected that Cía Cervecerías Unidas will gain additional market share in beer over the course of the forecast period to 2026.
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An alcoholic drink usually brewed from malt, sugar, hops and water and fermented with yeast. Some beers are made by fermenting a cereal, especially barley, and therefore not flavoured by hops. Alcohol content for beer is varied – anything up to and over 14% ABV (alcohol by volume), although 3.5% to 5% is most common. Beer is the aggregation of lager, dark beer, stout and non/low alcohol beer.See All of Our Definitions
This report originates from Passport, our Beer research and analysis database.
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