September 8, 2020 by Sujay Seetharaman

Beer Industry Overview – Introduction

Beer is generally prepared using four basic ingredients-malted cereal grains, hops, water, and yeast, and undergoes fermentation for a specified period of time. Additionally, flavors are sometimes added. There are various types of beers available in the market; among which, ale and lager are the two leading commercially consumed beers.

Global Beer Market Size And Industry Statistics

The global beer market size was valued at USD 617 billion in 2019, predicted to grow at a CAGR of 4 percent during the forecast period 2019-2023. This growth is credited to factors such as the easy availability of raw materials and the increasing consumption of beer in general across the world. During COVID-19, there was a spike in demand for alcoholic and malt-based beverages as people stayed at home and ordered them online.

US Beer Market Size And Industry Statistics

The American beer market was estimated to be USD 120 billion in 2019, growing at a CAGR of 2.5 percent for the forecast period 2019-2024. The US is the dominant market in the region. The US beer market share was valued at approximately USD 110 billion in 2019. The continued growth in small, upstart breweries makes the U.S. beer market a dynamic and competitive industry.

European Beer Market Size And Industry Statistics

Europe beer market share was an estimated USD 138 billion in 2019, growing at a CAGR of 2 percent for the forecast period 2019-2024. The growth in the European beer market is mostly from western European countries like Spain, France, Germany, and the UK wherein, the rise in discretionary spending has given birth to a number of restaurants and cafes offering beers of various types and flavors.

APAC Beer Market Size And Industry Statistics

APAC beer market size was valued at USD 217 billion in 2019, growing at a CAGR of 7.5 percent for the forecast period 2019-2024. This region represents clear dominance in the beer industry because of a noticeable increase in beer consumption in developing countries such as India, due to growth in preference to consume beer among the younger working-class population. Changing lifestyle patterns, rapid urbanization and rising disposable income levels in this region has favored the adoption of premium and high-quality beers.

Market Segmentation of Beer Industry

The beer market can be segmented based on product, packaging, pricing, flavor and alcohol content.

Based on product type

The beer industry can be classified into Lager, Ale, Stout and Porter, Malt and Others. Lagers are the most popular type of beer, with a market share of 43 percent in 2019. Ale follows Lager with a 20 percent market share, Stout and Porters at about 10 percent and Malt at 10 percent market share.

Based on packaging

The popular forms of beer are Canned, Bottled, and Draught/Draft beer. In 2019 the canned beer segment accounted for 60% of all beer sold, glass bottles accounted for 30% and draft beer (kegs) was 10%.

Based on price

Non-Premium, Premium, and Super-premium are how beers are segmented based on pricing. The premium segment dominates with more than 50 percent of the market share.

Distribution Channels

Total alcohol outlets have gone from 531,705 in 2008 to 643,142 in 2019. The number of outlets saw a decrease for the first time in 2019 after 2008. This could be attributed to the increase in eCommerce and D2C transactions for several discretionary categories such as alcohol and jewelry.

The majority of the beer is distributed through supermarkets and hypermarkets as they offer convenience and a wide variety of products to consumers. Off-trade beer distributors in general have higher sales than on-trade. In 2019, off-trade channels such as specialty stores, independent retail and convenience stores sold 700,000 units more than on-trade channels such as restaurants, bars, pubs and hotels.

Over the years, the number of traditional beer distributors has fallen from 4,595 in 1980 to around 3,000 in 2019. According to data from the TTB, there are more than 20,000 licensed alcohol beverage wholesalers. More details about the number of distributors can be found in the NBWA Membership Directory.

Top Beer Companies

The competitive landscape of the beer market is dotted by the presence of numerous small and large manufacturers who compete in price and quality. Leading players include Anheuser-Busch InBev, Carlsberg Group, Diageo plc, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery Inc., Heineken N.V., Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., Groupo Modelo, United Breweries Group, Breckenridge Brewery, SAB Miller PLC, Oettinger Brauerei Gmbh, Kirin Holdings Co. Ltd., and Molson Coors Brewing Company Tetra Laval.

Trends fueling the growth of Beer Market

Rapid urbanization and changing consumer preferences are also expected to positively impact the global beer market. The rising prevalence of health disorders such as obesity and other cardiovascular diseases given the hectic pace of today’s lifestyles are expected to fuel demand for lighter, low-alcohol, or non-alcohol beers. Technological advances aimed at innovating new types of beers, improving the quality and yield are also likely to accelerate market growth.


With a rise in the number of social drinkers, particularly in APAC and African countries, on account of improving income levels and growing middle-class population, the demand for premium beer has increased. Besides, alcohol-free and low alcohol beer has also gained popularity, especially among young consumers trying to make positive lifestyle choices and drink responsibly.

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Sujay Seetharaman

Market Analyst @ PipeCandy

Currently donning the Researcher's hat. Talks to himself.