Sapporo Holdings Ltd has reported a consolidated pretax loss for the half ended in June.

The Japanese brewer, which has been hit by increased competition in the beer-like category, reported a loss of JPY2.5 billion, compared to a profit of Y3.2bn in the same period last year.

Sapporo had launched what has become called the 'beer-like' category, beer flavoured products made from peas and soybeans. The success of Sapporo's brand DraftOne, however, convinced the company's rivals to launch similar products.

Sapporo's share of the 'beer-like' product market fell by half to 34%.

Overall, year-on year volumes fell 4%.

Beer volumes fell 5%, while low-malt products fell 34%. Beer-like products still managed to grow 37%.

Sapporo lowered its full year estimates for pretax profit to JPY6.5bn. Previous estimates had been JPY10bn.