Düsseldorf (dpa) – Bad news for millions of beer drinkers: Pils, export and wheat are expected to be more expensive soon.
Three leading German breweries – the Radeberger Group, Krombacher and Veltins – want increase their prices for gastronomy and retail noticeably next spring, as they confirmed to the dpa. The industry service “GetränkeNews” had previously reported on the plans.
Massive cost increases
Germany’s largest brewery group, Radeberger, justified the move with cost increases. “In addition to massive sales and earnings losses in the 18 months of the pandemic, all companies are now facing further massive increases in costs for energy, logistics, empties, raw materials and supplies.” , emphasized a company spokeswoman. These cost increases could no longer be compensated for by simply increasing efficiency. Therefore, the sales prices would have to be increased.
A Veltins spokesman pointed out that in the energy sector alone, costs have risen by over 150 percent in the past three years. “That can no longer be caught,” he said. The planned price increase therefore applies to gastronomy as well as to retail. Krombacher pointed out that the last major price adjustment was at least three years ago.
According to estimates by the “GetränkeNews” industry service, the price increases announced in letters to buyers for the glass of beer in the pub should be between 30 and 50 cents more expensive. The price for crates of beer in the trade is expected to rise by one euro. For those in the know, it is foreseeable that other breweries will follow the example of Radeberger and Co. Experience has shown that after a price increase by the big brewers, the regional brewers of Kölsch, Weißbier and Hellem also dared to step out of the cover and followed suit on a broad front. “Beer will be more expensive across the board in spring 2022,” the experts forecast.
Falling beer prices
In the eyes of brewers, there are good reasons for price increases. Since the beginning of the corona pandemic, there has been a significant drop in prices on the market. Because the dealers had used red pen offers for beer to lure customers into the shops even during the pandemic. The promotional price for the box of Premium Pils is already back at the 10 euro threshold. This means that beer does not cost more than in D-Mark times, when the crate was offered as a special offer for 19, 99 Marks.
In addition, people in Germany drank so little beer during the Corona crisis than ever since reunification. In the first half of the current year, domestic sales fell by almost 5 percent to a low of 3.3 billion liters, reported the Federal Statistical Office in the summer. Above all, the brewing industry lacked business in the catering trade and at the many major events. The only bright spot was the sale of bottled beer in the retail trade, from which only a few large breweries benefited.
However, beer lovers still have a grace period: Radeberger does not want to start raising prices until February. Retail prices are not even expected to rise until May. Krombacher and Veltins want to turn the price screw at the beginning of April. And there is still hope that, in view of the tough competition, some breweries will not go along with the wave of price increases in the end.