Printer Friendly

The year in review: 1992.

Cool summer weather and high precipitation dampened any hopes for a strong beer sales increase in 1992. The inclement weather conspired with a recession-plagued U.S. economy to keep growth to a minuscule 0.3 percent. Domestic beer sales (Domestic barrelage & imports) inched upwards by 0.2 percent to 188,985,000 31-gallon barrels.

Although beer sales remained flat as a day-old draft, the market was a frothy maelstrom beneath the surface, as brewers competed feverishly for every barrel of volume. The mission for the major players during 1992 was to maintain share at any cost, and price often seemed the weapon of choice. As severe price promotions swept the industry, once lofty premium brands stepped down to duke it out at popular prices.

Top Brewers

Despite the difficult climate, mighty Anheuser-Busch inched forward 0.89 percent with sales of 86,800,000 barrels, a number that stands as a company record. A-B's market share of U.S. sales moved up to 45.9 percent, creeping towards the company's stated 50-percent market share goal.

Miller Brewing Co. had a tougher year, as the continued decline of its flagship brands pulled volume down to 42,221,000 barrels, a 3.16-percent decline. In 1992, Miller market share of U.S. sales stood at 22.34 percent.

Coors showed marginal growth, creeping upward to 19,569,000 barrels, a 0.25-percent improvement. The company's market share of U.S. sales stood at 10.35 percent.
U.S. Beer Sales -- 1992 vs. 1991
 1992 Barrelage 1991 Barrelage % Change
Domestic 180,705,000(*) 181,446,000(*) -0.4
Imports 8,322,884 7,926,000 5.0
Exports 5,495,000(*) 4,611,000 19.2
Total 194,522,884(*) 193,983,000 0.3
* Estimated without adjustment for warehouse and malt coolers.
Includes sales to U.S. military abroad.
Copyright 1993 Modern Brewery Age.


For second-tier brewers, the climate was even less hospitable. The Stroh Brewery Co. continued to hemorrhage, with the company reporting a drop of 1,700,000 barrels to 14,100,000, or -10.76 percent. The company's new financial health seemed to avail it little, as its brands, including yeoman Old Milwaukee, continued to slide.

A leaner G. Heileman Brewing Co. managed to hold the line with a 200,000-barrel, 2.04-percent drop to 9,600,000 barrels.

S&P's Pabst Brewing Co. noted an increase of 400,000 barrels, reporting sales of 7,100,000 barrels, up 5.97 percent. S&P's Falstaff, Pearl & General lost barrelage, however, dropping 200,000 barrels to 1,200,000 barrels, down 14.29 percent.

Regional comeback

On the lower rungs of the brewing hierarchy, the picture was brighter, and several regional breweries showed encouraging growth. Many old-line regionals have embraced specialty beers, and are using niche products to stabilize or increase volume. Even regional behemoth Genesee Brewing Co. of Rochester, NY, has climbed on the bandwagon, as the company announced the formation of a specialty division, Shea's Brewery, which began marketing an amber lager.
Top 5 Brewer's Market Share(*)
 1992 1991
A-B 45.9% 45.6%
Miller 22.3 23.1
Coors 10.3 10.3
Stroh 7.5 8.4
Heileman 5.1 5.4
All Others 8.9 7.2
* Includes Imports.
Copyright 1993 Modern Brewery Age.

Several of the smaller regional players reported strong gains in 1992, despite the flat overall market. The Jos. Huber Brewing Co. of Monroe, WI, chalked up a strong year, as production climbed 34 percent to 134,500 barrels. D.G. Yuengling & Son of Pottsville, PA, also reported a remarkable year, with production climbing to 201,810 barrels, an increase of 28 percent.

Among the regional brewers, former microbreweries continued to show the strongest gains, as demand for their diverse specialty brews continued to rise. The Widmer Brewing Co. of Portland, OR, (a draught-only brewery) showed one of the strongest increases, as production jumped 61 percent to 28,500 barrels. Other former microbreweries, notably Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. of Chico, CA, and the Redhook Ale Brewery of Seattle, WA, were not far behind. Sierra Nevada increased production to 68,388 barrels, an increase of 53 percent, while Redbook's production jumped 45 percent to 49,500 barrels.

The microbrewing segment (consisting of breweries or brewpubs with production below 15,000 31-gallon barrels) continued its decade-long ascent, with openings outweighing closures by a still substantial margin. The number of operating U.S. microbreweries and brewpubs now approaches 300, although market share remains negligible. According to Modern Brewery Age estimates, microbreweries and brewpubs brewed an estimated 400,000 barrels in 1992, for a 0.2 share of the market.

Many microbreweries reported strong growth (although it should be noted that many are starting from a very small base). Standouts in the segment included the Maritime Pacific Brewing Co. of Seattle, WA, which reported an increase of 131 percent, to 1,800 barrels; the Stoudt Brewing Co. of Adamstown, PA, (which took home several medals from the Great American Beer Festival) chalked up a 121 percent gain for the year; and the Capital Brewery of Middleton, WI, which bolstered its numbers with contract production, climbing 98 percent to 8,347 barrels.

Microbrewery success stories were not limited to the West and Midwest, as Abita Brewing Co. of Abita Springs, LA, reported a 65 percent increase to 10,900 barrels and Catamount Brewing Co. of White River Junction, VT, jumped 44 percent to 11,800 barrels.

The growing specialty beer niche also encompasses contract brewers, companies that use existing plants to brew their own recipes. The Boston Beer Co., of Boston, MA, is the largest contractor by far, with reported sales of 273,000 barrels in 1992. Boston Beer now contracts at three regional breweries and brews at their own small plant in Jamaica Plain, MA. The Boston Beer Co.'s 1992 sales number would give the company the 13th slot on the MBA brewery ranking (Although contract brewers are not included in the ranking to avoid duplication of barrelage).
Top Domestic Brands
(in millions of barrels)
Brands 1992 1991 % 92 % 91%
 Change Share Share
 1. Budweiser 46.7 48.1 -2.9 24.7 25.5
 2. Lite 17.5 18.8 -6.9 9.3 9.9
 3. Bud Light 13.5 12.5 8.0 7.1 6.6
 4. Coors Light 12.3 11.7 5.1 6.5 6.2
 5. Busch 9.4 9.4 0.0 5.0 5.0
 6. Milwaukee's Best 7.0 7.1 -1.4 3.7 3.8
 7. Genuine Draft 7.1 7.0 2.0 3.8 3.7
 8. Old Milwaukee 5.9 6.6 -10.6 3.1 3.5
 9. High Life 4.9 5.6 -12.5 2.6 3.0
10. Natural Light 4.8 3.8 26.3 2.5 2.0
Modern Brewery Age estimates.
Copyright 1993 Modern Brewery Age.

Other contract brewers also reported strong years. The Dock Street Brewing Co. of Philadelphia, PA, reported sales of 12,000 barrels; the Brooklyn Brewery of Brooklyn, NY, reported 9200 barrels, and the Olde Heurich Brewing Co. of Washington, D.C., noted sales of 3,487 barrels.


There was also cause for rejoicing among American beer importers, as imports climbed 5.0 percent to 8,322,884 barrels. Necessity has forced importers to become more competitive, particularly in pricing. American consumers showed continued interest in imported brands, and aggressive pricing strategies helped give the segment a welcome boost.

Imports from each of the top five source countries showed significant percentage increases for 1992. Imports from the Netherlands increased 8.2 percent to 75,914,185 gallons; Canadian imports climbed 2.9 percent to 66,533,030 gallons; Imports from Mexico rose 11.5 percent to 47,430,418 and shipments from the Federal Republic of Germany increased 3.5 percent to 27,698,087 gallons. Imports from the United Kingdom showed the largest increase among the top five source countries, climbing 12.0 percent to 11,413,701 gallons.


The brightest spot on the U.S. beer sales ledger remains the export side of the docket, which saw a 19.2 percent increase to 5,495,000 barrels. Broader international strategies began to take shape, as U.S. brewers entered foreign partnerships and opened new export markets.

Miller announced alliances with partners in Mexico and Canada, Coors launched Extra Gold in the U.K., and Pabst moved its old Fort Wayne, IN-Falstaff plant to mainland China, where it will churn out Pabst Blue Ribbon for appreciative Chinese consumers. All the while, Anheuser-Busch continued its frustrating quest to purchase a 30-percent interest in Czechoslovakia's Budvar brewery, a move that would allow the American brewer greater trademark freedom in the European market.

All in all, it was an active year abroad for U.S. brewers. Even upstart Boston Beer Co. expanded its export market, with shipments of Samuel Adams Cream Stout to Ireland and Samuel Adams Boston Lager to Sweden.

Domestic brand performance

On the domestic front, the brand picture showed some minor shifts in 1992, and older brands continued to show incremental slippage. Budweiser and Lite both dropped slightly, although remaining at the head of the pack. Other senior brands fared worse, as Miller High Life experienced significant erosion, and Coors Banquet dropped right off the top 10. In contrast, Bud Light, Coors Light and Miller Genuine Draft continued to climb, showing volume increases despite fierce competition and a flat market. Anheuser-Busch Natural Light was the strongest performer among the top 10, and its strong volume increase confirmed Anheuser's boast that A-B now surpasses Miller in total light beer barrelage.

The top 10

The head that wears the crown is still Budweiser, but it may be uneasy in the TABULAR DATA OMITTED face of a 2.9 percent drop in 1992. Sales slipped to 46.7 million barrels, but the king still holds a dominant 24.7 percent share of the market.

Miller Lite, the nation's number-two brand, remained at the top of the light beer heap, despite a 6.9-percent drop. The less-filling alternative chalked up sales of 17.5 million barrels for a 9.3 percent share of the market.

Number three Bud Light recorded an impressive year, climbing 8.0 percent to 13.5 million barrels. Anheuser's light leader now holds 7.1 percent of the market. Coors Light was not far behind, climbing 5.1 percent to 12.3 million barrels for a 6.5 share of the market. Steadfast Busch held its number five slot from last year, with sales holding at 9.4 million barrels for a 5.0 percent share.

Miller held the six and seven spots, with Milwaukee's Best showing a 1.4-percent drop to 7.0 million barrels, and Miller Genuine Draft climbing 2.0 percent to a 3.8 percent share of market.

Stroh mainstay Old Milwaukee suffered a 10.6-percent decline, to come in eighth, with estimated volume of 5.9 million barrels and 3.1 percent share. Miller High Life also took a drubbing, declining to 4.9 million barrels and a 2.6 share.

Last, but certainly not least, Natural Light pulled an extra million barrels to give it the number ten slot and a 2.5 share of market. If the brand continues its upward trend, it will shoulder High Life aside for the number-nine slot next year.

New Products

American brewers introduced a limited number of new brands, but the year was marked by the emergence of an entirely new category--clear malt-based beverages. Coors was first out of the gate with a beverage dubbed "Zima," a word that means winter in Russian. Despite the moniker, consumers greeted the beverage warmly. "We are gratified by the market response to Zima," said Bob Rechholtz, Coors executive vice president of marketing, noting that Coors had a "strategic national expansion plan in place." Miller followed Coors' lead with the introduction of a clear beer in March 1993.

Miller also rolled out the popular priced Colders 29 and Colders 29 Light brands, and launched the above-premium Miller Reserve nationally. Coors went national with their Keystone Dry as well, although the viability of the dry segment was open to question by year-end.

Anheuser-Busch was the least active among the major brewers on this front, as it withdrew its Busch Cold-Filtered Draft from test markets, and focused its efforts on existing brands.

Malt liquor troubles

Malt liquor continued its role as the beer industry's bugbear, and the upstrength beverages remained a lightning rod for criticism. Despite the negative image of malt liquors, sales continued to rise, ensuring that brewers will continue to exploit the profitable niche.

The 1992 equivalent for Heileman's Powermaster was another Heileman-brewed product--Crazy Horse Malt Liquor. The brand was marketed by a Brooklyn-based contract brewer, the Hornell Brewing Co., and hit the market early in 1992. By April, the familiar warning rumbles were heard. The Oglala Sioux tribe denounced the product as disrespectful to the memory of their great war chief, and called for its removal from the market. Soon after the Sioux registered their complaint, Surgeon General Antonia Novello weighed in with her criticism. "This product is insensitive to the plight of the American Indian and the progress that has been made against alcohol abuse on the reservations." By October Congress had rescinded approval for production of Crazy Horse, although Hornell was allowed to sell the remainder of its stock.
Barrelage of Top 5 Brewers, 1978-1992
(in millions of barrels)
 A-B Miller Coors Stroh Heileman
1978 41.6 31.3 12.6 6.3 7.1
1979 46.2 35.8 12.9 6.0 11.2
1980 50.2 37.3 13.8 6.2 13.3
1981 54.5 40.3 13.3 6.2 14.0
1982 59.1 39.3 11.9 22.9 14.5
1983 60.5 37.5 13.7 24.3 17.5
1984 64.0 37.5 13.2 23.9 16.8
1985 68.0 37.1 14.7 23.4 16.2
1986 72.3 38.7 15.2 22.8 16.1
1987 76.1 39.3 15.7 21.6 16.3
1988 78.5 40.7 16.5 20.5 15.3
1989 80.7 41.9 17.7 18.2 13.1
1990 86.5 43.5 19.2 16.1 11.4
1991 86.0 43.6 19.5 15.8 10.2
1992 86.8 42.2 19.5 14.1 9.6
Copyright 1993 Modern Brewery Age

Non-alcoholic brew

Non-alcoholic barrelage continued to climb, and 1992 domestic production reached 2,480,000 barrels, compared to 1,896.000 barrels in 1991. Strong domestic no-alcohol brands continued to cut into the imported NAB market, as imports dropped 17.5 percent to 86,250 barrels.

Legal developments

Early in the year, state requirements on using wholesalers were found to be inconsistent by a General Agreement on Tariffs and Trades (GATT) panel. The panel was formed in response to Canadian complaints, which claimed that the three-tier system discriminated against Canadian products.

In June, the "Beer II" report was released, and found a variety of state and federal practices inconsistent with U.S. obligations under GATT. The issues in question had potential repercussions for every tier of the American brewing industry, but resolution of the matter is unlikely in the short-term.

Association News

The National Beer Wholesalers Association continued on the path towards stronger activism with the appointment of David Rehr as the organization's vice president of government affairs. Rehr, a veteran Capitol Hill staffer and lobbyist, vowed to bring a new sensibility to the fight. "We want to demonstrate to our members, who generously support us, that we're not a social organization having coffee with members of Congress. I want wholesalers to know that NBWA is a cutting-edge, aggressive lobbying group, and we get results."

In February, the NBWA caught the Office for Substance Abuse Prevention (OSAP) off base. OSAP had administered a breakfast meeting that was ostensibly a briefing on grants administered by the group. Private citizens were on hand to promote their programs, the breakfast was planned and hosted by a private contractor, and U.S. Senators were present. In NBWA president Ron Sarasin's words, all of this added up to "a self-serving free breakfast giveaway to promote subagency lobbying," and very possibly a violation of a law that prohibits "the spending of appropriated funds to influence a member of the U.S. Congress." As NBWA chairman Kirby Lawlis pointed out, "If it is not legally wrong, it is certainly morally wrong,"

In May, over 109 members of Congress requested that the General Accounting Office (GAO) investigate whether OSAP had been using taxpayer dollars to lobby or influence legislation pending before Congress.

The 2nd Annual Joint NBWA/Brewers legislative conference convened in Washington last Spring, and wholesalers were briefed on pending legislation. The conference attracted over 700 registrants, including 35 state executives and representatives from 422 beer wholesalerships.

NBWA president Ron Sarasin urged attendees to take the initiative when visiting Representatives and Senators. "Do what you do every day," he said. "Take the order. Lay out the issue, and then ask how a member will vote. If they obfuscate, then say, "That's a wonderful answer, but does that mean yes or no?"

After-action reports indicated the conference had been a success, with over 400 scheduled visits with representatives. NBWA's David Rehr reported that the wholesalers had made an impression on Capitol Hill. "Members of Congress still talk to me about their local wholesaler coming in to talk to them about the issues," Rehr reported. "It showed them that we are serious and committed."

In late May, the NBWA launched a broadside at a proposal for withholding federal highway funds from states that did not have a 0.08 blood alcohol TABULAR DATA OMITTED content (BAC) drunk driving standard in place. "This is outrageous," said Ron Sarasin, "Once again, Congress wants to wield economic blackmail to circumvent the Constitution. BAC is clearly a state issue under the 21st Amendment."

The NBWA managed to discourage a proposal in the Senate Transportation Appropriations Subcommittee to establish a national blood alcohol content standard of .08 percent. The issue has not died, however, and was revived late in 1992 by U.S. Transportation Secretary Andrew Card, who released a report encouraging states to adopt the .08 standard.

The NBWA convened in New Orleans in the Fall for the 55th annual NBWA convention. Over 1,300 wholesalers, brewers and suppliers attended two days of seminars and sessions.

The focus at the convention was on adding value to the product, and incoming chairman Kevin Forth charted a course for wholesalers in his address. "We can add more value to our businesses by redefining the relationship we have with our suppliers, redefining the relationship we have with our retailers; enhancing the image of beer among our consumers; and redefining the relationships we've established in our own communities.

"We must use our relationship with our communities, our retailers and our employees to give brewers and importers something they don't have, and they can't buy," Forth said. "only wholesalers can add value in local markets. We must be a vital part of the equation of success."

Forth called the 90s, "a time of trial and challenge for every member of NBWA," and stressed the need for all wholesalers to join with NBWA in facing the challenges at hand.

Beer Institute meeting

The Beer Institute held its annual meeting in May. Beer Institute president Jim Sanders confirmed his retirement, and Pat Stokes of Anheuser-Busch passed the chairman's mantle to Warren Dunn of Miller. "The level of cooperation among brewers has increased," Stokes asserted in his address. "I think a good example of that is our adoption of a new Beer Institute advertising and marketing code in a remarkably short time span."

Incoming chairman Warren Dunn stressed the impact that the excise tax increase had on the industry. "As a result of this tax," he said, "there has been a 2.2 percent decline in the U.S. beer industry, causing additional loss of jobs in a slow economy." Dunn also noted the ongoing challenges facing the industry. "There is potential for some extremely harmful legislation," he said, "but our success in managing the debate will determine the outcome. I have no interest in helping the industry manage a well-ordered retreat."

Century Council

During 1992 the Century Council continued to fight allegations that the anti-alcohol abuse group was a front for equivalency. In an address to the Brewers Association of America, Century chairman John Gavin reasserted his position in strong terms. "Despite what you may have heard or read," TABULAR DATA OMITTED Gavin said. "the Century Council is not about equivalency. Period."
U.S. Per Capita Consumption of Malt Beverages 1974-1992
(in Gallons)
1974 20.9
1975 21.3
1976 21.5
1977 22.4
1978 23.1
1979 23.8
1980 24.3
1981 24.6
1982 24.4
1983 24.2
1984 23.9
1985 23.7
1986 24.0
1987 23.9
1988 23.7
1989 23.4
1990 24.0
1991 23.1
1992 22.7(*)
* Estimate.
Compiled by the Beer Institute.
Copyright 1993 Modern Brewery Age.

Over the course of the year, the Council continued to build on its grass-roots anti-abuse programs without significant support from the U.S. brewing community. Many brewers continued to view the council as a tool of the distilling interests, and the Stroh Brewery Co. remained the only American brewer to support the Council.

Brewery news

The year was marked by unusually sharp exchanges between the brewers, as Coors and Anheuser-Busch exchanged barbs. Coors may have begun the tiff with its aggressive Extra Gold TABULAR DATA OMITTED campaign, in which the Colorado brewer used supposed consumer testimonials to cast an unfavorable light on Budweiser.

After being goaded for some time, Anheuser-Busch also removed the gloves and launched ads attacking the integrity of the Coors brewing process. The ads noted that Coors ships high-gravity beer via railroad car from Golden, CO, to a packaging plant in Virginia, where it is diluted. A-B warned consumers against being "railroaded."

Coors attempted to stop A-B's campaign through legal action. but a judge upheld Anheuser-Busch's right to "hoist Coors by its own petard." Peter Coors then made a televised appearance in which he defended the use of Shenandoah Valley water in Coors products and said. "We'll leave negative advertising to the politicians." Despite this admonishment, Coors continued to run its Coors Extra Gold campaign.


Anheuser-Busch suffered a shake-up in September with the departure Jack MacDonough, formerly A-B's vice president, international marketing. What was most unsettling to A-B was the identity of MacDonough's new employer--the Miller Brewing Co. Analysts viewed MacDonough as one of A-B's young Turks, and a skillful guerrilla marketer.

Stephen Burrows was tapped to fill MacDonough's old job, and Thomas Sharbaugh moved into Burrows' brand management role. August Busch IV, who had been handling marketing for Budweiser, took over as vice president for the Budweiser brands.

Management shuffles did not slow the A-B juggernaut, however, and the company set an all-time industry record with sales of 86.8 million barrels of beer. "Our beer volume gains were achieved despite the lingering effect of the 1991 Federal excise tax increase, the second coldest summer in two decades and continued weak economic conditions," said August Busch, III, A-B chairman of the board and president.

In other news, the company reported that it would sell off its distribution system in New Jersey. The moved seemed a strong vote of support for the three-tier system, as A-B broke up the largest A-B wholesaler in the U.S., company-owned for 40 years, to develop a network of smaller, independent wholesalers.

Miller Brewing Co.

Philip Morris' Miller Brewing Co. scored an undeniable coup with the TABULAR DATA OMITTED recruitment of MacDonough, and the company hoped to employ his skills to rebuild its shaky Lite empire (See interview with Jack MacDonough in this issue).

Miller was active on other fronts as well, as the company moved swiftly to broaden its international reach. In the Fall, the company announced that it would purchase a 7.5 percent interest in Fomento Economico Mexicano S.A. (a conglomerate that owns Cerveceria Cuauhtemoc and Cerveceria Moctezuma, and holds 49 percent of the Mexican beer market), and in January Miller announced it would buy a 20-percent stake in Molson Breweries. Miller also planned to purchase Molson's U.S. importer, which it intended to retain as a marketing arm for its new import portfolio.

Prior to the announcement of the Molson deal, it was also reported that Miller was looking at purchasing Heineken, although Philip Morris and Heineken denied the rumor.

Coors Brewing Co.

The Coors Brewing Co. made a number of sweeping changes in 1992, designed to improve the company's distribution efficiency and focus.

In the Spring, Coors announced it would expand its beer distribution network. The company decided to establish 28 redistribution centers to sell directly to distributors. "This puts a satellite distribution center with brewery-fresh beer within a day's delivery of each of our distributors," said Al Babb, Coors' executive vice president of operations.

In May, Coors announced that it would spin off its non-brewing businesses into a separate subsidiary to improve efficiency. "It is a natural and inevitable next step in the evolution of our businesses," said Bill Coors, chairman and CEO. "I believe it will result in a number of positive conditions for both companies." Analysts lauded the move, which they said could allow improved shareholder turn.

A few weeks later, Coors announced that it had begun the search for a new president for the Coors Brewing Co. division (W. Leo Kiely III assumed the position in February 1993). It was also announced that Bill Coors would assume the position of Coors Brewing Co. chairman, while Peter Coors would stay on as the brewery's CEO, and also assume the mantle of vice chairman.

In a further divestment move, Coors announced the sale of the Coors Transportation Co., a truck fleet that had been an integral part of the company. "This sale represents another important step in our efforts to sharpen our focus on the brewing business," Pete Coors said.

In July, Coors announced that it would drop its bottled spring water. Although the product had performed well in its test markets, the decline of the bottled water market made it less profitable. "You have to spend a certain amount on each brand to make it viable," said Coors' Heidi Buehler Nogues. "We decided we wanted to spend more on our beer products."

Competition & Cooperation

The theme of renewed focus at Coors was one echoed by other U.S. brewers, as Anheuser-Busch and Miller worked to stabilize declining older brands and hold share.

The top brewers have not restricted themselves to retrenchment, however. Each has launched campaigns to broaden the consumer base for beer and malt-based beverages, efforts that promise long-term benefits. Advertising that targets new demographic groups began to appear in 1992, as the industry began to search farther afield for new consumers. By expanding beer's appeal to include women and older Americans, brewers are tapping a potentially enormous increase in the beer-consuming public.

The recent introductions of clear, malt-based beverages are another sign that brewers are exploring the demographic and stylistic frontiers of beer. Early consumer reaction to these products has been adjudged favorably, and may herald the arrival of a strong new category.

Among existing categories, the strongest growth still comes from non-alcoholic brews and specialty beers. Analysts vary on projections for continued growth, but no ceiling is in sight.

Strangely, after abortive early efforts, few brewers have explored the potential for low-alcohol brews--session beers that hew to the tradition of English Mild Ales. In today's health-conscious climate, such products might attract a large following.

In this area, as in the larger specialty beer category, it is micro- and pub brewers that have led the way. By working to increase the aesthetic appeal of beer, small brewers continue to perform a valuable service.

Health & Beer

Debate on the future development of the beer market must retreat to the back burner, however, as familiar dark clouds have begun to gather over Washington. The President's Task Force on Health Care has begun deliberations, and the specter of a new round of taxation faces the industry.

Many industry executives attribute the 1991 sales decline to the last excise tax increase, and face the prospect of new taxes with trepidation.

Most galling to the industry is the "sin tax" moniker, which lumps beer together with tobacco, despite recent evidence for the healthful properties of malt beverages.

As a result, 1993 begins on a familiar note, and clashing brewers and wholesalers must once again sheath their swords and face common foes-regressive taxation and oppressive regulation.
COPYRIGHT 1993 Business Journals, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1993 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:brewery industry
Publication:Modern Brewery Age
Article Type:Industry Overview
Date:Mar 22, 1993
Previous Article:Those that are without sin ...
Next Article:NBWA survey says Congress opposes beer excise tax.

Related Articles
Ringnes Brewery names Seemayer new U.S. importer.
Shiner beer taps into Nashville.
Micro-, pubbrewers meet in Milwaukee.
Ottawa's Hart Amber Ale wins gold medal.
The year in review: 1993.
Institute for Brewing Studies reports boom year for micros.
Too many beers.
German beer consumption drops again.
IBS reports sales increasing for micros.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2016 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters