BEER IMPORTS TAKE A TUMBLE
It wasn’t a very merry end of the year for the beer import industry. According to the Beer Institute, import shipments were down another 12.7% in October, bringing YTD import shipments down 9.1%. That’s after a promising September, which was down only 1%. Dutch imports were down 18.4%, in line with YTD and highlighting a poor year for most European import shipments. UK and Ireland were down 15% and 35%, respectively, and Belgian imports dipped 38.3%. Mexican imports hung in there, down a fractional .5%. And Blue Moon-deprived Canadian imports were down 24.9%. While the numbers were grim, the industry knew that October was going to be bad. Although final figures weren’t in at press time, scanner data showed improvement for imports in November. Overall, it is anticipated that US beer shipments were going to be down around 2% total for the year.