Australian alcohol consumption should hit a ten-year low next year

Australian alcohol consumption should hit a ten-year low next year

Australians are drinking less alcohol, but an increasing spend on premium labels will push sales up by about a fifth over the next five years, a new study has shown.

Consumption of alcohol in the country should fall this year to a decade low of 9.8 litres per capita, down 2.4% from last year, according to IBISWorld forecast released today (7 November). But, alcohol spending is expected to increase by 20.5% by 2017 to AUS39.9bn (US$41.7bn) as Australians move towards premium beers and cider, the study says.

“Australia's beer drinking palate is becoming more sophisticated, with a number of European style beers now being produced on our shores,” said IBISWorld GM for Australia Karen Dobie. “Traditional full-strength lagers such as VB, Carlton Draught and Tooheys are losing market share in favour of cider and premium beer.”

Next year, Australians are expected to spend AUS33.1bn on alcohol.

On-premise consumption is expected to increase by 2.6% next year compared to 2011, with the sector accounting for 47.6% of total spending, IBISWorld said.

Cider will continue its popularity growth in Australia next year and is expected to account for 7% of total consumption, rising to 12.9% in 2017.

To view the study, click here.

Last month, UK cider company Westons announced it had bought its Australian distributor to tap into the country's growing demand for the beverage.