Beer shipments drop to record low

Kyodo

Total shipments of beer and beerlike drinks fell 3.8 percent in October from a year earlier to 34.29 million cases, a record low for the reporting month, data by five major brewers showed Friday.

The shipments of beer and beerlike drinks, including so called third-category beer, also marked a year-on-year fall for the third consecutive month, the brewers said.

Despite the trend, shipments of cheaper third-category beer edged up 0.5 percent to 12.32 million cases on firm demand by price-conscious consumers. One case holds 20 633-ml bottles.

Shipments of regular beer slipped 4.5 percent to 16.57 million cases, while those of “happoshu” low-malt beer slumped 10.4 percent to 5.40 million cases.