According to GuestMetrics, despite a difficult year for the beer category in on-premise in 2013, Craft and Cider both continued to post positive volume growth, taking share from Premium Light, Premium Regular, and Import beer throughout the course of the year:
- Beer had a difficult year in on-premise in ‘13, with volumes down 4.0 percent for the full year and dollar sales down 0.7 percent with a particularly weak end-of-year, though it should be noted there was a broad deceleration in overall traffic in on-premise towards the end of 2013, likely due to unfavorable weather & a shortened holiday shopping season.
- Craft grew volumes about 4 percent in 2013 compared to 2012 (dollar sales up 7.1 percent), and despite the broad slow-down across on-premise at the end of the year, still saw volumes grow 3 percent in 4Q, and remained in positive y/y territory at +1 percent during the final 4 weeks (these growth rates are more modest compared to off-premise due to craft having a much higher penetration in on-premise and therefore growing off a larger relative base in addition to pressure from the overall on-premise traffic weakness). Craft gained 2.2 points of y/y share of overall beer volumes in 2013. Given its y/y share was +2.1 points during the first three quarters and then increased to +2.4 points during 4Q, this indicates that even though craft growth slowed somewhat towards the end of the year, that underlying consumer demand for craft beer remains healthy.
- Cider grew volumes about 49 percent for the full year compared to 2012 (also more moderate than off-premise growth due to having a higher penetration in on-premise). Cider volume growth slowed somewhat to 42 percent in 4Q and 38 percent during the final 4 weeks of the year, but similar to Craft, given its y/y share gain held steady at +0.5 points throughout the course of the year, the slowing is likely indicative of weak traffic to on-premise rather than diminished consumer demand.
- Premium Lights had a difficult year, with volumes down more than 10 percent for the full year vs. ’12 (dollar sales down 8.4 percent), and weakened even further at the end of the year. Premium Light lost about 2.0 points of category share in y/y terms in ‘13, going from a 1.9 share loss during the first half to -2.1 point share loss during the second half of the year. Premium Regular and Imports also had a difficult year in on-premise, each down mid-single digits in volume.
- From a style standpoint, IPA continues to gain the most share (+1.2 points) along with Cider (+0.5 points), and Belgian Wit Ale and Bitter Ales both up +0.2 points of share.
- Greatest share gains in 2013 were by Angry Orchard, Dos Equis, Lagunitas, Redds, and Stella. Corona Extra also gained share. Brands with the greatest gains in distribution ( percent of locations carrying) are Angry Orchard, Bud Black Crown, and Redds, and greatest velocity gains are Lagunitas, Angry Orchard, and Modelo.
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