| The Carlsberg team at Bikram in Patna. Telegraph picture |
Patna, Oct. 31: The liquor sale trend of the past two years in Bihar has revealed that beer has toppled other forms of foreign liquors.
Industry sources told The Telegraph on Wednesday that with beer giants like Molson Coors Cobra and Carlsberg entering Bihar, the liquor market seems to have got a shot in the arm.
“Last year, there was a slump in beer sales. The reason was technical and had nothing to do with consumption. In the summer of 2011, the beer companies did not provide products to Bihar between April and June. There was a deadlock between the state and the liquor companies regarding pricing of the products. The companies wanted a better price. After June, the problem was solved and the supply system was smoothened,” an official at Bihar State Beverages Corporation Limited (BSBCL) said.
“It is a fact that there has been a huge increase in the sale of beer as compared to foreign liquor. Beer cans, especially the 330ml ones, are a hit among people, mostly youths,” he added.
According to the figures available, in 2011 around 15.57 lakh cases of beer were sold in Bihar between April and June. From July to September last year, 13.29 lakh cases of beer bottles were sold. Total sale of bottled beer between April and September rested at 28.86 lakh cases. One case consists of 12 beer bottles. “This year, between April and June, at least 29.9 lakh cases of beer have been sold. In 2012, we are expecting the growth to be more than 90 per cent. Hard liquor has taken a back seat in comparison to beer,” Chandrashekhar, a senior office holder at Foreign Liquor Retailers’ Association, said.
Canned beer sales, too, have skyrocketed.
“Last year, 2 lakh cases of canned beer were sold in the state. Out of this, 1.6 lakh cases were 500ml cans, while 40,000 were 330ml cans. This year, we are expecting a growth of at least 200 per cent in the sale of canned beers. Canned beer was introduced in the state two years back. The sale, going by the market trend, will exceed 3.5 lakh cases by the end of the current financial year. The 330ml cans are more in demand and we expect a total sale of 1 lakh 330ml cases this year,” the BSBCL officer said.
The beer sales from April 2011 to March 21 this year were 49.96 lakh cases.