Brewers: 96% of Bulgaria's Beer Consumption Is National Production

Industry | July 18, 2013, Thursday // 19:42|  views

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96% of the beer consumed in Bulgaria in 2012 came from Bulgaria-based plants, making the brewery industry a main contributor to the country’s GDP, according to the Union of Brewers in Bulgaria, SPB.

The consumption of beer per capita in Bulgaria in 2012 amounted to 73 liters, according SPB, informed.

In 2012 the purchased quantity of beer on the Bulgarian market reached 5 404 000 hectoliters, 424 000 liters of which were imported and 92 800 liters were exported, drawing the line at 5 084 000 liters sold by the Bulgarian brewers.

“Although the Bulgarian beer market registered a slight increase in 2012, the most profitable type of bands- glass bottles, continues going down in volume terms. In the last several years, a rise in the share of sales through the so called “modern trade” channels (big market chains and supermarkets) has been observed, while the share of beer sale in dining places has considerably shrunk. This is why the positive income growth from selling beer is slimmer than the positive growth of the volumes of sold beer,” said Dragan Radivoevich, head of the management board of SPB.

The abnormally cool weather conditions in the summer season of 2013 impact the beer market, with a forecast for a slight drop in sales, having in mind that around 50% of the annual beer sale is generated mostly in the May- August period.

The members of SPB produce more than 80 assortments of light and dark beer and seven types of beer mixes.

Since early 2013, they have expanded the portfolio of beer produced in Bulgaria with more than 30 new beer bottle bands, including the ever more popular beer mixes, a combination of fruit juice and beer.

96 % of the consumed beer in Bulgaria is national production, which accounts for the considerable value the brewery sector adds to the country’s economy by direct and indirect employment, high investment rate and payments to the state budget.

For the first half of 2013, the money invested in development of all SPB members, exceeds BGN 30 M.

The beer and malt production employs 2 500 people, while the interconnected sectors of beer distributors provide 8 000 jobs.

Around 120 000 tonnes of malting barley and more than 450 tonnes of natural hops and hop products are processed for beer production annually.

In 2012, 50 000 tonnes of malt have been yielded in the country.

According to Ivana Radomirova, chief secretary of the brewers’ union, the social contribution of the breweries is not determined solely by the figures, emphasizing the sector’s development.

“For us, top priorities are also the initiatives, promoting social responsibility: from our partnership with unionists and proper labor practices to projects benefitting the society.”
Radomirova drew the attention to brewers’ continuing support for the “Sport is the better way for children to grow up” campaign that promotes mass engagement in sports and provides alternative for the families of teenagers to prevent them from experimenting with alcohol.

“Apparently our efforts in this direction pay off, as according to the data of “Ipsos Bulgaria” polling agency 18 % of the Bulgarian adults already know about the campaign, with the most informed age group being that of people between 30-39 years of age- our most important target group,” Radomirova commented.

The brewers’ campaign is the sole initiative with which Bulgaria participates in the Alcohol and Health Forum of the European Commission.

Expectations are that the project of the Bulgarian brewers is assessed as a good European practice in support of the European strategy for reducing alcohol-inflicted harm.
The Union of Brewers in Bulgaria, SPB, is a representative organization of all beer companies in the country.

The production-technical capacity of all SPB members comprises of eight beer producing plants, owned by “Bolyarka”, “Britos”, “Zagorka”, “Kamenitsa”, “Carlsberg Bulgaria” and “”Lomsko Pivo”, two independent malts producing factories, one mill, specialized in hop pellets production, two beer-houses- mini breweries, two research institutes and 11 companies, distributing materials and equipment for the industry.

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Tags: beer, brewers, Bulgaria


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