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RUSSIA: Russian beer production leaps but brewers face trying times

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Russia produced 4.27bn litres of beer in the period January to September 2000, an increase of 21.4% year-on-year, the country's statistical authorities have reported, but many brewers still face extinction.Head of the executive secretariat of the Russian Beer and Soft Drink Producers Union, Vyacheslav Mamontov, has reported that the increase is due to around 30 companies undergoing full reconstruction in the period.These 30 companies of around 300 large and mid-sized producers accounted for 80% of production growth. In particular Mamontov pointed to the Baltika Brewery in St Petersburg, Ochakovo in Moscow, Sun Interbrew, and Krasny Vostok in Kazan.The picture for other brewers was not so rosy with many only just staying in business, with as many as 15% seeing drops in sales.The leading companies have better technology, well-known brands and are able to invest in advertising. Mamotov said that the other are struggling to keep up and the trends suggest there will soon only be a few players left on the market.


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