Demand for German beer rises in the wake of the pandemic

Demand for German beer rises in the wake of the pandemic

Over the first six months of 2022, the sale of German beer increased by 3,8 percent compared to the same period last year. This equated to 4,3 billion litres of beer being drunk this year, some 160 million litres more than the first half of 2021.

German beer sales on the rise post-COVID

On Monday, Germany’s Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) published figures revealing that the sales of beer warehouses and breweries in Germany rose by 3,8 percent over the course of the first six months of 2022. This rise in sales equated to 4,3 billion litres of German beer being consumed worldwide, which is 157,2 million litres more than what was drunk during the first six months of last year.

On the other hand, the sale of drinks that mixed beer with other, non-alcoholic beverages, like fizzy drinks or fruit juices, declined by 3,3 percent, accounting for only 5,3 percent of the total sales. The above figures do not include non-alcoholic beers, malt-based drinks, or beer imported from outside the EU.

The data from Destatis also revealed that beer sales rise noticeably in the spring and summer - presumably due to all of those people heading to beer gardens and folk festivals when the weather is fine - and drop in the autumn and winter.

Germans demand more beer!

Of the total beer sales over the first half of this year, 3,6 billion litres (82,5 percent) were sold for consumption in Germany and were subject to taxation. This represents a 6,4 percent increase compared to the same period in 2021.

The remaining 759,2 million litres of German beer were sold tax-free (i.e. as exports), 7 percent less than in 2021. Of this, 405,3 million litres were sold to EU countries, 348,5 million litres were sold to non-EU countries, and 5,3 million litres were given free to employees working in the breweries.

Beer consumption in Germany still below pre-pandemic levels

The amount of beer drunk in Germany this year is still a lot lower than before the coronavirus pandemic. During the pandemic, beer sales in Germany tanked, with Germans drinking 5,5 percent less beer in the first six months of 2022 compared to the same period in 2019, largely as a result of the lockdowns that kept bars and pubs shut. This means 253,8 million more litres of beer was drunk in Germany in the first half of 2019.

In the long term, the sale of beer has dropped significantly over the past 20 years; beer sales in Germany have dropped by around 25 percent since 2000.

William Nehra


William Nehra

William studied a masters in Classics at the University of Amsterdam. He is a big fan of Ancient History and football, particularly his beloved Watford FC.

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