European beer consumption plummets in 2020 due to the pandemic

27-Apr-2021 - Belgium

beer consumption plummeted across Europe in 2020 after bars and restaurants were closed to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, a brewers' association said on Monday.

Photo by <a href="">kazuend</a> on <a href="">Unsplash</a>

Compared with 2019, the total volume of beer sold in 2020 fell by a net 34 million hectolitres, or 9 per cent, according to The Brewers of Europe.

The European hospitality industry was particularly hard hit by measures to stem the outbreak of Covid-19, with a 42 per cent drop in beer consumption, from 126 million hectolitres to around 75 million hectolitres.

Retail beer sales rose marginally, but not enough to offset the losses, the organization said. Jobs also fell victim to the pandemic last year, with more than 800,000 lost throughout the beer industry supply chain.

This represents a third of all posts in the sector, with the fall from 2.6 million to 1.8 million. The biggest job losses were in beer hospitality, although distribution was also affected.

German beer sales also dropped during the pandemic, sinking to historically low levels. Breweries sold 8.7 billion litres last year, 5.5 per cent less than in 2019, the Federal Statistical Office reported in February. (dpa)

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