In terms of off-trade sales, beer was less impacted by the COVID-19 crisis than other areas of alcoholic drinks in 2020, as the category’s low price and low alcohol content make it suitable for home consumption. Beer purchases made at independent small grocers witnessed an increase in average ticket because instead of purchasing just one bottle consumers moved to six-packs as restrictions on the operations of on-trade outlets and consumer concerns about exposure to the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19 led to a shift towards home consumption.
In 2020, new consumption occasions emerged as a result of the pandemic. Consumers increasingly allowed themselves to have a beer with lunch or after work, as remote working continued for many throughout the year.
Bavaria remained dominant in beer in 2020, though changing distribution patterns, including an upturn in the share of the largest channel, independent small grocers, and the dynamic expansion of e-commerce, led to increased fragmentation in the category. Indeed, the top three players – the only ones to register a more than negligible individual volume share - all experienced share erosion during the year.
Beer is expected to return to growth and exceed pre-COVID-19 volumes in 2021, with an accelerated rate of expansion in off-trade sales and an improved performance in the on-trade channel as it benefits from the reopening of consumer foodservice establishments and the fact that beer is more affordable than other alcoholic drinks and suitable for a broader range of consumption occasions. Imported premium lager, which significantly outperformed the overall beer category in 2020, is set to continue to see robust growth during the forecast period.
Beer has historically been sold through traditional channels, with independent small grocers being the main distribution channel. Independent small grocers gained further volume share during the COVID-19 crisis as many consumers opted to shop close to home, although others chose to pick up beer in one-stop shops at supermarkets and hypermarkets in order to reduce the frequency of shopping trips and the number of outlets visited.
The craft beer segment is expected to recover momentum in 2021-2022, supported by the revival of on-trade sales. Consumers are showing growing curiosity about new products, and craft producers that brew at their pubs have been making efforts to launch differentiated products.
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Understand the latest market trends and future growth opportunities for the Beer industry in Colombia with research from Euromonitor International's team of in-country analysts – experts by industry and geographic specialisation.
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This report originates from Passport, our Beer research and analysis database.
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