9 Unmissable Facts about the Indian Beer (Brewing) Industry

Föroya Bjór under CC BY 3.0

-The top 3 beer companies in India according to 2014 figures are United Breweries, SABMiller and Carlsberg (Tuborg strong being most popular in India).

-The market share of United Breweries in the Indian beer industry stands at more than 50% (on 2014 sales figures).

-Taxes collected by Indian States from Beer contribute as much as 20-30% of their annual budget.

-Beer is taxed about 3 times more in comparison to the tax rates applicable on spirits.

-There’s only one licensed beer outlet in India per 18000 people whereas, in China there is one beer outlet per 300 people.

-The growth rate in the Beer market was 12% in 2012 which has now slowed down to only about 4% presently.

-Tax incidence on beer has been found to be in the range of 60-85% per bottle in a Moody’s study.

-The beer consumption in India stands at merely 35% in the alcoholic beverages category whereas globally it stands at 80%. The beer consumption metric falls even further down to just 18% when looked at from absolute alcoholic content standpoint.

-Foreign players such as Heineken and Budweiser are quickly gaining turf through largely imported stock in an industry that was once dominated by domestic companies.

Editorial insights:

-To resurrect Indian beer industry, the state government’s should rationalise the tax structure by creating a distinction between low and high alcohol containing beverages. Also due to the present tax structure, consumers find high-alcohol containing spirits such as whiskey, vodka etc. more economical leading to higher consumption of the same.

-There should be an easing of the distribution restrictions which only allows beer to be sold through licensed alcohol outlets.

-Since beer is an agricultural product that is made from coarse grains such as Barley, any sops provided to the industry will also help farmers. It is pertinent to mention here that the beer industry has already helped farmers to raise crop productivity by educating them on best farming practises. The industry is also funding in research to develop high-yielding barley seeds.


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