Carlsberg is set to become the latest brewer to launch a home brewing kit in an attempt to boost flat beer sales in Western Europe.

The Danish brewer today (15 March) launched DraughtMaster, a draught beer system that it believed would ensure that "the genuine taste of draught beer is preserved all the way from the brewery to the consumer". Carlsberg's move follows similar launches in recent months from InBev and Heineken.

The initial aim of DraughtMaster, Carlsberg said, would be to boost on-trade sales in four key markets - Denmark, Norway, Portugal and Sweden. The brewer is targeting a 21-litre keg at smaller bars, which for reasons of space cannot stock Carlsberg on draught. The kegs, Carlsberg added, are the first in the world to be made from PET.

Lisbet Khan, international innovation manager at Carlsberg, told just-drinks today (15 March) that a 5-litre DraughtMaster keg for home consumption would hit the Swedish market next month.

"What's inspired us is the need for our smaller customers to be sure that they can have Carlsberg on draught at the right quality," she added.

Khan said that Carlsberg had seen Heineken's launch of its home draught beer system, BeerTender in Denmark, but believed its distribution strength and brand recognition in Scandinavia gave DraughtMaster an advantage.

Only the Carlsberg brand would be sold through DraughtMaster, Khan said, although the brewer had plans to incorporate its Tuborg brand into the system.

Khan declined to reveal the launch costs behind DraughtMaster but said the brewer was looking to roll out the system into other markets.