3 Major Japanese Beer Makers Upbeat on 2020 Sales

Economy

Tokyo, Jan. 9 (Jiji Press)--Three major Japanese beer makers have shown bullish sales plans for 2020 despite a shrinking market amid a decline in young people's interest in beer products.

The Japanese market for beer and quasi-beer products is seen to have shrunk for the 15th straight year in 2019, partly in the face of fierce competition with other alcoholic drinks, such as low-priced "chuhai" spirits-based products, and beer demand is expected to continue falling this year.

Meanwhile, sales of so-called third-segment beer-like beverages have been robust as consumers are becoming budget-minded.

Kirin Brewery Co. aims to sell 136.7 million cases this year, up 0.9 pct from the previous year, spending actively on the "Ichiban Shibori" beer and "Honkirin," a third-segment product. Each case contains the equivalent of 20 633-milliliter bottles.

Suntory Beer Ltd. plans to renew its mainstay "Kinmugi" third-segment series this month. Sapporo Breweries Ltd. and industry leader Asahi Breweries Ltd. will launch new third-segment products in February and March, respectively.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press