Downturn of CIS markets hits spirits volumes

25th May, 2018 by Amy Hopkins

Global alcohol consumption marginally increased in 2017, but total spirits volume declined, according to data from the IWSR.

Consumption of spirits marginally decreased in 2017

Total alcohol consumption increased by a modest 0.01% to 27.86 billion cases in 2017, reversing 2016’s decline of -1.25%.

However, there was a mixed performance among categories – volumes of wine and cider increased by +0.6% and 2.5% respectively, while spirits and mixed drinks declined by 0.4% and 1%. Growth of beer was stagnant, meaning the category’s global decline slowed.

In 2016, data from the IWSR showed spirits volume increased by 0.3%, with Tequila, whisky and gin offsetting the negative performance of vodka.

Last year the industry was hit by a 7.6% drop in consumption in the CIS markets, where 25.2m cases were lost as consumers in Russia and Ukraine turned away from vodka.

Asia Pacific and the Americas were the fastest-growing regions for spirits thanks to the continued strength of baijiu in China and whisky (+1.2%) in the broader market. In the Americas, whisky (+3.2%), vodka (+1.8%) and agave spirits (+5.3%) bolstered spirits volumes.

Within the total spirits sector, agave-based products witnessed the fastest growth at +5.2%, followed by gin and genever (+4.5%) and whisky (+2%).

Elsewhere in the global alcohol market, beer returned to growth in the Americas, with performances in Mexico and Argentina counteracting continued decline in the US. The overall decline of the beer market slowed thanks to additional positive results in Africa, Middle East and Europe.

For cider, growth in Africa and Middle East contributed to the category’s global increase, despite weakness in Europe. A slowdown in Asia Pacific and “negative trends” in CIS markets and the Americas led to a 1% decline for mixed drinks.

Wine’s comeback in 2017 was thanks to the performance of still wine in Italy, Russia and the US. Mature markets the UK and France witnessed the most significant declines.

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