Finland: Beer sales down 1% this summer

Compared to a decade ago, Finland's beer consumption fell by 70 million litres this summer, the Yle reported on October 19.

Beer consumption fell by 70 million litres
© E-Malt
Source:  E-Malt news

A total of 224 million litres of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beer were sold between July and September in Finland this year, representing a one percent drop on last year's consumption rate, or a decrease of 2.1 million litres.

Meanwhile, sales of beer containing alcohol fell by 3.6 million litres, or 4 percent, compared to the same quarter last year, according to figures published by the Federation of the Brewing and Soft Drinks Industry on Wednesday.

The figures are based on sales data provided by the association's member companies.

Summer is the most important season for the brewing industry, and periods of heatwave usually lead to a spike in sales. This summer did not however have as prolonged heatwave periods as last year, and this is reflected in the sales data.

Cider sales also fell during the summer months, by 0.4 million litres or 7.4 percent, while sales of long drinks rose by 0.3 million litres or 1.6 percent.

Federation CEO Tuula Loikkanen described the drop in beer sales as "dramatic," noting that sales during July to September fell by 70 million litres compared to 10 years ago.

This is due to both the switch to stronger drinks and an overall decline in the drinking of alcohol, Loikkanen said.

During this same periond, sales of soft drinks increased by 3.3 million litres, or 4.2 percent while sales of waters decreased by 1.6 million litres, or 4.5 percent.

Finnish brewing group Olvi has reported that while sales and turnover grew in the third quarter of this year, operating profit fell by almost one fifth.

The Iisalmi-based group said overall operating profit fell 18.6 percent in Q3, while the corresponding figure for the domestic market was down by 30 percent.

Olvi issued a profit warning earlier this week due to the drop in sales, although the company has seen an increase in sales both within Finland and across the Baltic Sea region towards the end of Q3.

The company's interim report does not include sales figures from Belarus, as Olvi is withdrawing from the country — noting in the report that it expects to sell off its Belarusian subsidiary within a year.

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