Switzerland is the country with the most breweries per capita in the world. As of September 11, 2017 there were 833 breweries in Switzerland, which produced in average 4.163 hectoliters per year. The total number increased by 99 breweries or 13.5% within one year. This makes Switzerland with its 8.4 million inhabitants the country with the highest density of breweries in the world, even higher than in the United Kingdom, which lately claimed this record for itself (inside.beer, 4.9.2017).
In average 10,000 people in Switzerland have one brewery. The comparable figures are 30.491 for the United Kingdom (with a total of 1,994 breweries in 2016), 58,714 for Germany (with 1.408 breweries in 2016) and 60,932 for the United States (with 5,301 breweries in 2016).
Total domestic production in Switzerland was 3,467,365 hectoliters in the brewing year 2016/2017, which ended on September 30. This is 0.9% more year on year. Per capita consumption amounted to approximately 54-55 liters last year, which is 23% lower than in 1990/1991 when Swiss consumers drank 71 liters per capita and year.
This year’s increase in domestic production can be attributed to the rising number of breweries in the alpine republic on the one side but also to a 3.5% decrease in beer imports on the other side. Switzerland imported 1,144,869 hectoliters in the last brewing year, which is still about one fourth of the total consumption.