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More Tuff Sales Results: AB Down 4.5% for 4 Weeks thru Jun 4 in IRI MULC; MC Down 3.1%  

Total beer volume dropped 2.2% for 4 weeks thru Jun 4 in IRI multi-outlet + convenience data, reported by Consumer Edge’s Brett Cooper this morn.  AB had especially rough Memorial Day period as its volume dropped 4.5% for 4 weeks.  And its avg prices up only 0.7%.So it lost 1.2 share of volume and 1.4 of $$ during this period.  MillerCoors volume down 3.1%, but its avg prices down 0.1%.  So  it lost just 0.2 share of volume, but still lost 0.6 share of $$.   Constellation Brands Beer Division volume up 11% with avg prices up 1.3%.  But  Brett breaks out Constellation’s imported and domestic volume (domestic is Ballast Point).  And Ballast Point volume down 9% for 4 weeks.  In all, Constellation gained 1.1 share of volume, 1.4 of $$ for 4 weeks thru Jun 4 in IRI MULC.   Boston Beer also continued to experience significant declines.  Volume and $$ down about 7% for 4 weeks.  So its avg prices about flat (up 0.2%).  And finally Heineken volume down 2.8% for 4 weeks thru Jun 4 in IRI MULC and its avg prices up 1.1%.   With 4 of 5 suppliers down 3% or more, and no supplier averaging more than 1% in pricing (rounded),  in all this is not a very pretty picture for any of these companies, except Constellation. And that’s way it’s been so far in 2017.

Brett also updated his forecasts for 2d qtr beer company depletions based on latest IRI softening.  Brett now expects AB volume will be down 3.5% in Q2, MC down 2.5%, Boston Beer down 7.5% and Craft Brew Alliance will be down 3%.   Only Constellation depletions expected to be up 10% for qtr.

INSIGHTS Express, Vol 19, No 108; June 13, 2017



April Imports Down 8%; Flat Yr-to-Date; Data Disconnect; What Gives?   

April imports dropped 245,000 bbls, 7.8% according to US govt stats, reported by Beer Institute Friday afternoon.  That meant imports now up just 18,000 bbls, 0.2% yr-to-date.  But that makes little sense compared to known scan data and Constellation’s reported depletions data.  Imports were up 6.5% thru Apr 29 in Nielsen all-outlet, now up 7% thru 5/20.  And recall, Constellation, which represents over half of all imports, reported sales-to-retailers up 9-10% in 1st qtr. Constellation still flying in scan data; up 13.6% thru 5/20 in Nielsen.  Yet Mexican import shipments down 1% thru Apr, perhaps having to do with timing of last yr’s bottle recall.  Dutch imports up 3%, Belgian imports down 10% and Canadian down 6%.  Whatever the cause, import shipments do not reflect current retail trends.

INSIGHTS Express, Vol 19, No 101; June 5, 2017