Germany: How the most popular beer brands performed in 2017

The list of Germany’s most important beer brands was once again published by Inside Getränke, the independent trade journal for the whole beverage industry , which also launched the information service  one and a half years ago. The so-called Inside Brand Chart is published every year in January with an update in July and lists all beer brands with sales of more than one million hectoliters in Germany in the preceding year.

The Inside Brand Chart 2017 shows again the difficult business environment for German Brewers in their home market. Despite major advertising spending, the majority of brands lost sales in 2017. Worst hit were several  brands by AB InBev (Hasseröder -9.3%, Beck’s -5.4%, Franziskaner -2.7%). This might be interpreted as a lack of interest of the world’s largest brewer in the world’s fifth largest beer market,  which led last week to a sale of the Hasseröder (and Diebels) brand and brewery. (, 16.1.2018)

Oettinger (-5.4%)  and Warsteiner (-4.5%), number 2 and 7 on the list, showed again negative sales figures, which resulted in both cases in a change of key personnel  (Oettinger:, 31.10.2017, Warsteiner:, 7.9.2017).

Surprising  to most observers is the fact that Augustiner, the iconic beer brand from Munich, which always showed unchecked growth in the last decades, recorded declining sales of -2.0% for the first time since the 1970s. Reasons are said to be a price increase last summer and the fierce competition from look-alike brands like Tegernseer, Bayreuther Hell, Chiemseer and Mooser Liesl.

New in the branded beer list with sales just over 1 million hectoliters  is Ur-Krostitzer (+15.1%), a brand from Germany’s leading beverage group Oetker, which is also represented with its flagship brand Radeberger (-0.3%) and Jever (+2.6%). The success of Ur-Krostitzer is also the decline of the Sternburg brand, another Oetker brand brewed in the Leipzig region. Sternburg, a low price beer brand in contrast to the middle priced brand Ur-Kostritzer, peaked sales with about 1.8 million hl ten years ago, from which only 0.6 million hl remained at the end of 2017.

Positive results, like in the years before achieved market leader Krombacher (+1.9%;, 13.1.2018) based in the village of the same name and neighbor Veltins (+0.8%) from Grevenstein, just 45 km north-east of Krombach (and 28 km south-west of Warstein).

Back on the track of positive results is again Paulaner (+3.0%) from Munich, in which Heineken holds a 30 per cent interest. (, 10.2.2017) After relocation of the brewery from its traditional site downtown Munich to the outskirts of the Bavarian capital, the company had logistical and technical problems and was not able to satisfy all demand for its beers. Subsequently Paulaner lost about 100,000 hl of sales (-4.3%) in 2016.

 The whole Inside Brand Chart 2017 is available here for subscribers of inside-getraenke. 

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