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Beer and craft beer in Australia - Statistics & Facts

The Australian beer industry has experienced rapid growth in recent years.

In part, this can be attributed to the number of consumers of alcohol in the country; in 2019, a total of 82 percent of Australian adults said that they consumed alcohol. Moreover, Australia's beer production in 2018 was the highest in the Australia / Oceania region, with the country producing a total of 16.1 million hectoliters; compared to around three million in the same year that New Zealand produced. Also in 2018, Australians exhibited a preference for stronger beers; consuming 64.4 liters of high strength beer per capita but only 18.75 liters of middle strength brews.

In terms of commercial beer, both CUB and Lion were the dominant breweries when it came to product popularity. Great North Brewing and Carlton (both of which are CUB products) were the most popular commercial beers, with a market share of 12 percent apiece. Lion’s two most popular products were XXXX, with a share of just over nine percent, and Tooheys, with a share of just over six.

The beer industry contributes significantly to the Australian economy. The national total contribution in 2018 hitting 4.6 billion Australian dollars. Breaking down economic contribution further to a state or territory level, Queensland and Victoria both contributed in excess of one billion Australian dollars each. Moreover, the beer industry directly and indirectly provided around 46 million jobs nationally in pubs, clubs, cafes and restaurants.

Australians spend, on average, between 26 and 50 Australian dollars on beer in a given week, mostly purchasing bottles of cans in smaller sizes. The most popular styles of beer are Pale Ale or Extra Pale Ale, with 86 and 81 percent expressing their preference for these styles respectively.

Craft beer is increasing in popularity and availability in Australia, accounting for around 23 percent of the beer market, together with other, smaller commercial products. The highest concentration of craft beer drinkers in Australia are in New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland; this can be attributed to the higher concentration of both breweries and retail outlets in these regions. Most are aged between 30 and 39, and a significantly higher proportion are male rather than female.

Beer is very much an integral element of Australian culture; as well as a wide selection of commercial beers and craft beers, home brewing is becoming increasingly popular for Aussies.

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Beer and craft beer in Australia

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Economic contribution

Craft beer retail

Craft beer consumer profile

Beer industry overview

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