Germans bought less beer last year, resuming a long-term downward trend


BERLIN (AP) — German beer sales dropped 4.5% last year, resuming a long-term downward trend, official figures showed Thursday.

German-based breweries and distributors sold about 8.4 billion liters (2.2 billion gallons) of beer last year, the Federal Statistical Office said. That figure doesn’t include non-alcoholic beer and beer imported from outside the European Union.

In 2022, beer sales increased 2.7% thanks to a recovery in demand at home and in the EU following the end of COVID-19 restrictions. But demand in both markets was lower again in 2023.

Sales inside Germany — more than four-fifths of the total — dropped 4.2% to 6.9 billion liters (1.8 billion gallons).

Exports were down 5.9% overall. There was a relatively modest 2.6% drop in sales to other countries in the 27-nation EU, which bought 784 million liters (207 million gallons) of German beer, while sales to other countries were down 9.6% at 646.7 million liters (170.8 million gallons).

German brewers have been struggling with a long-term downward trend fueled by health concerns and other factors. The statistics office said last year’s sales were 11.3% lower than in 2013 and 25.3% lower than in 1993.

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