Last year, over 39 billion litres of beer containing alcohol were produced in the European Union (EU). The EU’s beer production was equivalent to around 76 litres per inhabitant.
In addition, in 2018 the EU produced over 1 billion litres of beer which contained less than 0.5% alcohol or had no alcohol content at all.
Germany, top producer
Two-thirds of the beer containing alcohol produced in the EU came from six Member States. Germany was the top producer in 2018 with a production of 8.3 billion litres (or 21% of the EU total production). In other words, about one in every five beers containing alcohol produced in the EU originated from Germany.
Germany was followed by the United Kingdom (4.5 billion litres produced, or 12%), Poland (4.0 bn litres, or 10%), Spain (3.6 bn litres, or 9%), the Netherlands (2.4 bn litres, or 6%) and Belgium (2.4 bn litres, or 6%).
Compared with 2017, Italy recorded the largest increase in the production of beer containing alcohol (21%), followed by Hungary (11%) and Czechia (6%).
In contrast, the production of beer in the United Kingdom fell by 20%, in both Austria and Slovakia by 10%, and in the Netherlands by 9%.
The source dataset can be found in Eurostat table DS-066341.
The Netherlands, top exporter
The Netherlands exported 1.9 bn litres of beer containing alcohol in 2018. This made it the largest beer exporter of all EU Member States, ahead of Belgium and Germany (both 1.6 bn litres), followed by France (0.6 bn litres) and the United Kingdom (0.5 bn litres).
The United States was by far the main destination for beer exports to non-EU countries (1 billion litres of beer containing alcohol exported there in 2018, or 29% of total extra-EU exports of beer). The United States was followed by China (453 million litres, 13%), Russia (234 million litres, 7%), Canada (217 million litres, 6%), Korea (198 million litres, 6%), Switzerland (101 million litres, 3%), Australia (99 million litres, 3%) and Taiwan (91 million litres, 3%).
The source dataset can be found in Eurostat table DS-645593.
Mexican beer heads imports from outside the EU
The internal market for beers containing alcohol that are not produced in the EU is marginal. However, when importing from non-EU countries, Member States favoured Mexican beer (250 million litres, or 52% of all extra-EU imports of beer in 2018), ahead of Serbian beer (57 million litres, 12%), US beer (43 million litres, 9%), Belarusian beer (23 million litres, 5%), Ukrainian beer (19 million litres, 4%), Chinese beer (17 million litres, 4%), Russian beer (14 million litres, 3%) and Thai beer (10 million litres, 2%).
This news item marks today's International Beer Day.
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