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Decline Pace in Scan Trend Nearly Quintupled Over Last Five 4-Week Periods; How Low Can It Go?

Tuff hits to beer biz just keep on comin’.  Volume off 2.8% for 4 wks thru Jun 17 in Nielsen all-outlet scans.  Four-wk volume trend steadily eroded from -0.6% thru May 20 to -2.8% thru Jun 17.  Yr-to-date volume trend now -0.8%, tho $$ sales still ekin’ out +0.6% gain.  Premium problems worsened: premium light and regular volume each off 6.6% for 4 wks.  Premium segment now down 4% yr-to-date.  Annualized, a 4% hit to premium beer is 3.3 mil bbls.  Economy beer segment softened in most recent period, but almost 3 pts better than premium trend yr-to-date: -1.1%.  Above premium still +3.7% YTD thanks to usual winners, but up just 2% last 4 weeks.  FMB trend improved slightly in most recent period, but still off slightly.  Hard sodas disappearing, Ritas and Redd’s in rocky waters, while Mike’s, Twisted Tea and Smirnoff Ice showing strength.  Do millennials actually drink their daddy’s  malternatives?

Also notable: Not only did Diageo rev up growth in scans to double-digits for 4 wks (10.2%), but Blue Moon Belgian White +9.5% for 4 wks, +6.6% YTD.  Bud Light/Bud trends worsened again: -8.2% and -9.2% respectively for 4 wks.  Coors Light took a 5.1% hit in most recent period, Miller Lite -3.4%.  “Three more stones” (15-packs) boosted Key Light trend to +6% for 4 wks, up 1.6% yr-to-date.  Economy segment really fracturing on price.  For last 4 weeks prices range from $12.03/case for Hamm’s to $17.13/case for Bud Ice.

INSIGHTS Express, Vol 19, No 119; June 27, 2017


Hey, Hey, Hey!  Beer Inst Estimates A Taxpaid Gain in May! YTD US Shipments Still Off Near 2%  

Following nasty 2.3-mil-bbl taxpaid shipments decline Feb-Apr, Beer Inst economist Michael Uhrich estimates domestic brewers’ May taxpaids +600K bbls, 3.8%.  That’s best single mo since last Aug.  For 5 mos, taxpaids still -1.4 mil bbls, -2%.  And with imports flattish thru Apr, means known yr-to-date US shipments also off 1.4 mil bbls, 1.7%.  Jun-Jul could be oppy for domestic brewers to pick up some lost ground.  Last yr, mid-summer shipments down over 700K bbls, 2.2%.

INSIGHTS Express, Vol 19, No 114; June 22, 2017