11/10/2016 - World Beer Market 2016

World Beer Market 2016

Press Release from Plato Logic Limited, October 11th 2016

  • World Beer Market falls -0.6% in 2015: first decline for over 30 years
  • Zero growth forecast for 2016
  • Updated Top 10 Brewers table announced
  • Leading international brands: Budweiser closes in on Heineken

Beer market specialists Plato Logic are currently projecting zero growth for the World Beer Market in 2016, following the first decline in over 30 years recorded in 2015. China, the world’s largest beer market by volume, declined by more than 3% in 2015 and is projected to be lower again in 2016.

Ian Pressnell, Director of Plato Logic, commented: “The 2015 result may not have been a meltdown, but it was nonetheless hugely significant, underlining how industry growth has been driven by China.” However, Plato Logic data also show that excluding China all other markets grew by +0.5%, while in China itself premium beers grew by over 20%.

“We’re potentially looking ahead to a future where headline growth may be lower, but also less dependent on mainstream beer volumes in China.”

Plato Logic have also released an updated Top 10 World Brewers league table, following completion of the ABI-SABM combination (based pro forma 2015 volumes and assuming planned disposals).



World’s Leading Brewers, pro forma 2015, million hl

Source: Plato Logic Limited, October 2016.

Notes to chart: 2015 volumes adjusted for A-B InBev acquisition of SABMiller and related planned disposals (including to MCBC, CR Snow and Asahi). Some deals may be pending regulatory approval.


Looking at the 2016 projections in more detail, Plato Logic forecast net beer market growth of around +0.1% in the Americas region and +2.0% in Africa, offset by declines of -0.5% in Europe and -0.2% in the Asia/Pacific region.

Plato Logic’s latest projections also see a return to modest growth of around +2% in 2017, assuming some recovery in China.

The Budweiser brand approached a major landmark in 2015, closing in on the Heineken brand’s position as ‘leading international beer brand’, based Plato Logic’s metric of ‘non-domestic’ volumes. Heineken has held this position for at least the last 30 years, so this would be a major milestone in the global beer industry if Budweiser achieves the leading position, as appears probable, in 2016 or 2017.



Plato Logic’s latest annual “World Beer Report” is published 10th October and contains 2016 projections for all world beer markets. Published every year since 1994, the Plato Logic “World Beer Report” is a standard source of reference used throughout the international brewing and allied industries.


For further information on Plato Logic’s “World Beer Report” please visit,,

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About Plato Logic Limited: Established in 1992, Plato Logic Limited is a leading specialist supplier of beer market intelligence. We provide a comprehensive range of international beer industry data, including 150 country reports and 250 specialist beer industry reports. For more information please visit our website,