2020
9
UK Beer Market Report 2020
2020-12-22T03:00:54+00:00
OX990080
2195
129019
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Report
en_GB
“Beer sales have been hit hard by the closure of pubs and bars and restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic, with the increased sales through retail not enough to make up…

UK Beer Market Report 2020

£ 2,195 (Excl.Tax)

Description

The UK Beer market report identifies consumer attitudes towards beer purchasing, beer brands and buying behaviours in the drinks market. This market report covers the market size, market forecast, market segmentation and industry trends for the Beer market in the UK. 

Current Market Landscape

The temporary closures of pubs, bars and restaurants due to COVID-19, and restrictions on these venues when they’ve been able to operate, are estimated to see beer sales through the on-trade halve. Some of this has shifted to retail, but many occasions have been lost.

  • Beer sales are estimated to fall by 9% by volume and 26% by value in 2020, to 4 billion litres and £14.1 billion.
  • 42% of people who drink and buy beer enjoy drinking it while remote socialising with friends/family

Offering some good news for beer during a time of limited social occasions, making this a key occasion for brands to target. Putting a spotlight on the shared sensory experience of enjoying the same drink could tap into the demand for a connection beyond the virtual.

Future Market Trends in Skincare Ingredients and Format Trends

The alcohol moderation trend is a threat to sales of beer. An increase in product choice in low-/non-alcoholic beers over the last few years encouraged 25% of beer drinkers to drink these in the 3 months to September 2020. Among these drinkers, 56% claim to be drinking more low- and non-alcoholic beers since the COVID-19 outbreak, showing they are gaining ground to help
support beer sales.

Brand extension, including flavour development, is an opportunity for brands, given that 65% of people who buy and drink beer like to try new beers from their favourite brands and illustrates the importance to brands of new launches to keep existing brand users engaged and buying. Learnings from cider and white spirits underline the potential for more fruit-flavoured variants, for example.

Read on to discover more details or take a look at all of our UK Drinks market research.

Quickly understand

  • The impact of COVID-19 on the drinking and buying of beer.
  • Types and variants of beer drunk, and where beer purchased.
  • New launch activity in beer, and factors most likely to prompt the buying of a new beer.
  • Perceptions and usage of brands in the beer market.
  • Behaviours and attitudes related to the drinking and buying of beer.

Covered in this report

Products: Ale (bitter, mild, pale, export and brown ales, barley wine), lager, cask ales, alcoholic ginger beer, stout, porter.

Brands: AB InBev (Stella, Budweiser, Corona, Becks, Bud Light), Molson Coors (Carling, Sharp’s), Carlsberg (San Miguel, Kronenbourg), Heineken (John Smith’s, Birra Moretti, Amstel), Ashahi (Peroni), Diageo (Guinness), BrewDog, Greene King (Old Speckled Hen, Abbot Ale), Marston’s (Hobgoblin, McEwan’s), Adnams Brewery, Foster’s, IPA, Crabbies, C&C (Tennent’s), Asahi (Tyskie)l, S.A. Damm (Estrella Damm), Beavertown, The Wild Beer, Brooklyn Naranjito, Black Sheep, Cooperative Food, Morrisons, Timothy Taylor Championship Beers, T&R Theakston.

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

Written by Richard Caines, a leading analyst in the Food & Drink sector, his extensive knowledge delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

Beer sales have been hit hard by the closure of pubs and bars and restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic, with the increased sales through retail not enough to make up for lost sales through the on-trade. This will mean a bigger emphasis for beer brands on beer drinking at home, including tapping into remote socialising occasions. Brand extensions will be important in keeping brand users engaged and buying, while the alcohol moderation trend highlights the need to promote low-/non-alcoholic beers and smaller premium servings.

Richard Caines
Senior Food and Drink Analyst

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • Key issues covered in this Report
    • COVID-19: Market Context
    • Economic and other assumptions
    • Products covered in this Report
  2. Executive Summary

    • Impact of COVID-19 on beer
      • Figure 1: Short-, medium- and long-term impact of COVID-19 on beer, 24 November 2020
    • The market
    • Beer sales hit hard by the closure of pubs and bars
    • Beer volumes will take time to recover to pre-COVID levels
      • Figure 2: Forecast of UK value sales of beer, 2015-25 (prepared 24 November)
    • Lager extends its market dominance
    • Focus on health expected to endure
    • Over-55s warrant attention
    • Companies and brands
    • Continental lagers shine
      • Figure 3: UK retail value sales of the leading lager brands, 2019/20*
    • Guinness and BrewDog grow in off-trade
      • Figure 4: UK retail value sales of the leading ale and stout brands, 2019/20*
    • Low and no alcohol space continues to attract NPD
    • Various brands move to strengthen sustainability
    • Adspend sees dramatic drop
    • Low loyalty, low willingness to pay more for mainstream brands
    • The consumer
    • Beer usage falls sharply in 2020
      • Figure 5: Frequency of drinking beer, October 2019 and September 2020
    • Seven in 10 beer drinkers drink lager
      • Figure 6: Types of beer drunk in the last 3 months, September 2020
    • Craft varieties drunk by four in 10 beer drinkers
    • Fruit-flavoured beers are on the menu for one in four
    • Low-/non-alcoholic beer warrants attention
      • Figure 7: Varieties of beer drunk in the last 3 months, September 2020
    • Supermarkets are the main source of purchase; a quarter shop online
    • Special offers most likely to encourage purchase
      • Figure 8: Factors most likely to prompt buying of new beer, September 2020
    • New launches are needed to retain engagement
    • Quality over quantity preferred by six in 10
    • Beer is go-to evening-in drink for half of drinkers
      • Figure 9: Behaviours related to beer, September 2020
    • Strong interest in brands supporting local pubs
    • Direct-to-consumer sales an opportunity
      • Figure 10: Attitudes towards beer, September 2020
  3. Issues and Insights

    • COVID-19 puts bigger emphasis on drinking beer at home
    • Consumers slow to return to buying beer at pubs/bars
    • Beer is go-to evening-in drink for half of beer drinkers
    • Brands can tap into remote socialising
    • Big opportunity for more brand extensions in beer
    • New launches important for beer brands
    • Flavour development helps to drive sales
    • Fruit-flavoured beers are on the menu for one in four
    • Dual approach needed to combat alcohol moderation trend
    • COVID-19 puts a spotlight on health
    • Low-/non-alcoholic beers gaining ground
    • Quality over quantity preferred by six in 10
    • Half see craft as worth paying more for
    • Emphasis on localness and community will help to support sales
    • Local beers have strong appeal
    • Strong interest in brands supporting local pubs
    • Direct-to-consumer sales an opportunity
  4. The Market – Key Takeaways

    • Beer sales hit hard by the closure of pubs and bars
    • Beer volumes will take time to recover to pre-COVID levels
    • Lager extends its market dominance
    • Focus on health expected to endure; over-55s warrant attention
  5. Market Size and Forecast

    • Beer sales hit hard by the closure of pubs and bars
      • Figure 11: Short-, medium- and long-term impact of COVID-19 on beer, 24 November 2020
    • Value sales of beer estimated to fall by a quarter in 2020
      • Figure 12: Total value and volume sales of beer, 2015-25 (prepared 24 November)
    • Beer volumes will take time to recover to pre-COVID levels
      • Figure 13: Forecast of UK value sales of beer, 2015-25 (prepared 24 November)
      • Figure 14: Forecast of UK volume sales of beer, 2015-25 (prepared 24 November)
    • Market drivers and assumptions
      • Figure 15: Key drivers affecting Mintel’s market forecast, 2015-24 (prepared on 27 October 2020)
    • Learnings from the last recession
      • Figure 16: Growth in value and volume sales of beer, 2009-13
    • Forecast methodology
  6. Market Segmentation

    • Lager dominates the UK beer market
      • Figure 17: UK value and volume sales of beer, by type, 2018-20
    • Move to premium but declining volume sales in ales/bitter
    • Retail sales boost not enough to make up for lost pub sales in stout
  7. Channels to Market

    • Collapse in on-trade beer sales during COVID-19 outbreak
    • Sales of beer through retail set to increase by nearly 31%
      • Figure 18: Value and volume sales of beer, by channel, 2015-20
  8. Market Drivers

    • Number of factors hitting volume consumption of beer
    • Alcohol moderation trend poses threat to beer sales
    • COVID-19 pandemic means fewer people drinking beer
    • Focus on health and saving money likely to increase
      • Figure 19: Reasons for limiting/reducing alcohol usage, April 2019
    • Beer duties unchanged since 2017 but duty system under review
      • Figure 20: UK excise duty rates for beer, 2009-19
    • Rising costs likely to push up beer prices
    • End of Brexit transition period should have small impact on beer
    • Government looks to support the economy and health
    • VAT cut and Eat Out to Help Out aimed to support foodservice
    • Government’s health push puts a spotlight on obesity
    • Most people’s financial position still healthy or OK
      • Figure 21: Trends in how consumers describe their financial situation, December 2014-October 2020
    • 35-44s an important group to target for beer brands
      • Figure 22: Trends in the age structure of the UK population, 2015-25
  9. Companies and Brands – Key Takeaways

    • Continental lagers shine, Guinness and BrewDog grow in off-trade
    • Low and no alcohol space and sustainable continue to attract NPD
    • Adspend sees dramatic drop, campaigns touch on COVID-19
    • Low loyalty, low willingness to pay more for mainstream brands
  10. Market Share

    • Majority of lager brands see double-digit increases in retail sales
    • Stella retains position as number one lager brand
    • Strong performances for continental lagers
      • Figure 23: UK retail value and volume sales of the leading lager brands, 2018/19-2019/20
    • Guinness and BrewDog make big gains in off-trade
      • Figure 24: UK retail value and volume sales of the leading ale and stout brands, 2018/19-2019/20
  11. Launch Activity and Innovation

    • Major players continue to expand low and no alcohol offerings…
    • Guinness launches 0.0 beer
    • Tennent’s Zero moves into the off-trade
    • Stella Artois joins low & no beer market
    • Sharp’s creates the most widely available alcohol-free amber ale
    • …while craft beer pushes innovation in the space
    • The Alcohol Free Brewing Company makes its debut
    • Big Drop pushes boundaries of alcohol-free flavour
    • Beavertown introduces low-/no-alcohol craft beer range
      • Figure 25: Examples of low-alcohol and alcohol-free beer launches, 2020
    • New product development gets fruity
      • Figure 26: Examples of beer launches with fruit and fruit products as an ingredient in the UK beer market, 2020
    • Limited edition launches are far from limited
    • Harvest Hells returns
    • Beavertown promises a new beer every month
    • Campervan Brewery launches Limited Edition range
    • Beer brands come out in support for NHS and community
    • Camden Town Hells rebranded for NHS heroes
    • Freedom Brewery brings neighbours together
    • NPD continues to explore sustainability
    • Cardboard packaging becoming more commonplace
    • Tennent’s to capture carbon emissions
    • BrewDog goes carbon negative
    • Surplus food continues to provide inspiration
    • Major players refresh core brands
    • Coors Original heading to the UK
    • Budweiser Budvar range reveals new packaging
    • Budweiser Prohibition axed for Bud Zero
    • Grolsch relaunches in the UK
  12. Advertising and Marketing Activity

    • Adspend sees dramatic drop
      • Figure 27: Total above-the-line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on beer, by month, 2019 – September 2020
    • Heineken recruits James Bond for Dry January
      • Figure 28: Total above-the-line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on beer, by top 20 advertisers in 2019 and January-September 2020
    • Molson Coors
    • Carling continues to focus on localism
    • Pravha launches first UK campaign
    • Coors Light debuts first new campaign in six years
      • Figure 29: Total above-the-line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on beer, by top 20 brands in 2019 and January-September 2020
    • Guinness doesn’t want people to toast
    • Carlsberg leads spending
    • Budweiser revives classic ad to highlight togetherness
    • Corona Extra wants to help people rediscover paradise
    • Asahi Super Dry launches first global campaign
    • Peroni focuses on the small things
    • BrewDog opens virtual bar…
    • …and various other breweries host online pub quizzes
    • Nielsen Ad Intel coverage
  13. Brand Research

    • Brand map
      • Figure 30: Attitudes towards and usage of selected brands, November 2020
    • Key brand metrics
      • Figure 31: Key metrics for selected brands, November 2020
    • Brand attitudes: Guinness stands out as consistently high quality
      • Figure 32: Attitudes, by brand, November 2020
    • Brand personality: BrewDog seen as more fun than others
      • Figure 33: Brand personality – macro image, November 2020
    • Guinness stands out as the most traditional brand
      • Figure 34: Brand personality – micro image, November 2020
    • Brand analysis
    • Peroni seen as more sophisticated than other brands
      • Figure 35: User profile of Peroni, November 2020
    • BrewDog seen as the most innovative brand
      • Figure 36: User profile of BrewDog, November 2020
    • Guinness stands out on authenticity
      • Figure 37: User profile of Guinness, November 2020
    • Stella Artois has strong associations with quality
      • Figure 38: User profile of Stella Artois, November 2020
    • Budweiser failing to stand out from other lager brands
      • Figure 39: User profile of Budweiser, November 2020
    • Being refreshing and good value Heineken’s strongest points
      • Figure 40: User profile of Heineken, November 2020
    • Carling has lowest level of satisfaction
      • Figure 41: User profile of Carling, November 2020
  14. The Consumer – Key Takeaways

    • Beer usage falls sharply in 2020
    • Supermarkets are the main source of purchase, a quarter shop online
    • Low-/non-alcoholic beer warrants attention, but so does ‘less but better’
    • New launches are needed to retain engagement
    • Beer is go-to evening-in drink for half of drinkers
    • Strong interest in brands supporting local pubs
  15. Impact of COVID-19 on Consumer Behaviour

    • Confidence about visiting restaurants/bars was slowly returning
      • Figure 42: Concerns about going to restaurants/bars indoors, 10-19 November 2020
    • Four in 10 try to limit time in-store; a boost to online shopping
      • Figure 43: Selected behaviour changes since the COVID-19/coronavirus outbreak, 10-19 November 2020
    • COVID-19 pandemic expected to heighten focus on sustainability
      • Figure 44: Changes in the environment being seen as a priority since the COVID-19 outbreak, by gender and age, 8-19 October 2020
    • Greater focus on eating healthily likely to feed through to drinking
      • Figure 45: Changes in eating healthily being seen as a priority since the COVID-19 outbreak, by gender and age, 8-19 October 2020
  16. Usage of Beer

    • 63% drink beer; 38% at least weekly
      • Figure 46: Frequency of drinking beer, October 2019 and September 2020
    • 25-44 males are core beer drinkers
      • Figure 47: Drinking beer once a week or more often, by gender and age, September 2020
  17. Changes to Beer Drinking Since COVID-19 Outbreak

    • 59% of drinkers are drinking the same amount of beer; equal numbers report drinking more and less
      • Figure 48: Changes to amount of beer drunk since the COVID-19/coronavirus outbreak, September 2020
  18. Types of Beer Drunk

    • Seven in 10 beer drinkers drink lager
      • Figure 49: Types of beer drunk in the last 3 months, September 2020
    • Small repertoire of types of beer drunk by most beer drinkers
      • Figure 50: Number of different types of beer drunk in the last 3 months, September 2020
  19. Varieties of Beer Drunk

    • Craft varieties drunk by four in 10 beer drinkers
    • Fruit-flavoured beers are on the menu for one in four
      • Figure 51: Varieties of beer drunk in the last 3 months, September 2020
    • A quarter of beer drinkers drink low-/non-alcoholic beer
    • More large brands enter the segment
      • Figure 52: Usage of low-/non-alcoholic beer, by age, September 2020
  20. Where Beer is Purchased

    • Supermarkets main source of purchase
    • One in five buys beer at discounters
      • Figure 53: Where beer is bought, September 2020
    • Nearly a quarter bought beer online
    • Consumers slow to return to buying beer at pubs/bars
  21. Factors Most Influencing Choice of New Beer

    • Special offers most likely to encourage purchase
      • Figure 54: Factors most likely to prompt buying of new beer, September 2020
    • Flavour development helps to drive sales
    • Local beers have strong appeal
  22. Beer Behaviours

    • New launches important for beer brands
      • Figure 55: Behaviours related to beer, September 2020
    • Low- and non-alcoholic beers gaining ground
    • Quality over quantity preferred by six in 10
    • Half see craft as worth paying more for
    • Beer is go-to evening-in drink for half of beer drinkers
    • Brands can tap into remote socialising
  23. Attitudes towards Beer

    • Strong interest in brands supporting local pubs
      • Figure 56: Attitudes towards beer, September 2020
    • Direct-to-consumer sales an opportunity
  24. Appendix – Data Sources, Abbreviations and Supporting Information

    • Abbreviations
    • Consumer research methodology
  25. Appendix – Market Share

      • Figure 57: UK retail value and volume sales of the leading lager manufacturers, 2018/19-2019/20
      • Figure 58: UK retail value and volume sales of the leading ale and stout manufacturers, 2018/19-2019/20
  26. Appendix – Advertising and Marketing Activity

      • Figure 59: Total above-the-line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on beer, by month, by media type, 2019 and January-September 2020

About the report

This market report provides in-depth analysis and insight supported by a range of data. At the same time, introductory and top-level content is provided to give you an overview of the issues covered.

Market

Mintel provides a range of market information, frequently through the category level, including market size and forecasting, complete with market drivers that illustrate the forces that shape a category or market.

Consumer

Mintel’s proprietary consumer research provides our analysts with the attitudinal and behavioral data used to provide valuable insight to topical issues.

Brand/Company

Mintel provides overviews of the top brands and manufacturers, and uses consumer research to explore attitudes and reactions to brands, as well as insight into what will resonate with consumers.

Data

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*databooks not available with UK B2B Industry reports.

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