Will Suntory buck the beer trend in Japan in 2011?

Will Suntory buck the beer trend in Japan in 2011?

Suntory Holdings is targeting a rise in beer sales in Japan, despite the forecast of a shrinking market.

In a report by Asia Pulse earlier today (12 January), the Japanese brewer said it expects to see its beer sales in 2011 increase by 3.7% on its performance in 2010. While Suntory also predicted a 3% fall in sales overall in Japan, the company is hoping to gain ground in both high-end and low-priced no-malt beers, the news service said.

The firm's Suntory Liquors unit has set a beer sales target for 2011 in the region of 61m cases.

Like other Japanese brewers, Suntory has looked to raise its profile outside of the domestic market, where beer has struggled in recent years. Late last year, it followed Sapporo Holdings into South Korea, through a distribution tie-up with Oriental Brewery in the country.