Blog: Carlsberg catches up on low-strength lager trend
James Wilmore | 14 February 2013
Carlsberg has today revealed its hand in the battle over low-abv beers in the UK.
The Danish brewer's first new launch into the 2.8% and below category is a citrus version of its namesake lager called, imaginatively, Carlsberg Citrus. I guess it does what it say on the tin. (Incidentally, the brewer lowered the abv of its Skol brand to 2.8% in 2011, but Citrus is its first new launch in the category).
This trend in the UK towards new low-strength beers, Molson Coors has Carling Zest (2.8%), A-B InBev has Rolling Rock (2.8%), is for three main reasons.
Partly to offer health-conscious consumers more choice.
Partly to fulfil a pledge to remove a a billion units of alcohol from products per year by December 2015, as part of the government's responsibility deal.
But also, and perhaps as tellingly, it makes business sense. The goverment cut duty rates on beers at 2.8% and below back in 2011, as a way to "tackle problem drinking by encouraging industry to produce, and drinkers to consume, lower-strength beers".
Carlsberg points to Nielsen figures in its press blurb today showing that the lower- strength beer category is growing 50% year-on-year.
A government policy that's boosting profits and helping public health? Well fancy that.
Follow me on Twitter @jamescwilmore
Here's a round-up of the top stories on just-drinks last week, featuring Carlsberg, Heineken, Coca-Cola Amatil, California's winelands and Cognac....
The Coca-Cola Co's Keurig Cold machine won't be out until next year. But co-developer Keurig Green Mountain has given us a taste with the unveiling this weekend of another at-home beverage platform, t...
It's a bank holiday here in the UK on Monday (25 August). just-drinks' team will be taking a well-earned lie down. ...
Poland is hardly noted for its cider consumption, but all this could be about to change. ...
- just The Preview - Pernod Ricard's Q4 & FY
- CCA - Coca-Cola's Canary in the Mine
- Comment - Hybrid Spirits: Innovation or Laziness?
- Comment - Another One Bites Bacardi's Dust
- Brown-Forman's Q1 Performance by Region, Brand
- Mast-Jägermeister targets UK off-trade boost
- SABMiller exec to become CFO at Beam Suntory
- Brown-Forman unveils Jack Daniel's UK push
- Champagne will not regain lost ground until 2018
- Bacardi announces CFO switch