GlobalData is predicting that the global beer and cider market won’t recover to its 2019 value of US$630.4bn until 2022. This represents a difference of -US$55.4bn against its previous value for the market in 2022.

Despite this and the initial scare for the beer and cider market, the analytics firm suggests that things could have been a lot worse.

Aaron Bryson, Consumer Analyst at GlobalData, commented: “The substantial shrinkage is a reflection of the damage caused by a non-existent foodservice channel throughout much of the year. In contrast, consumer confidence, which was initially decimated but rebounded relatively quickly, saw consumers retreating to the comfort of their own home with their favourite brands of beer and cider, as opposed to at the local pub.”

According to GlobalData’s Week 10 COVID-19 tracker consumer survey, published at the start of this month, 43% of global respondents still expect the situation to get worse over the next month in their respective countries. Despite this, consumers purchasing habits in relation to beer and cider have largely been maintained. The same survey found that 45% of respondents have been purchasing the same amount or more beer, since the outbreak of COVID-19. In contrast, only 28% of respondents stated that they had reduced or stopped buying beer since the outbreak.

A similar story is seen with cider. The survey found that 33% of respondents had maintained or increased the volume of cider they purchase, and 28% had also reduced or stopped purchasing cider, since the outbreak.

Bryson added: “The original concern displayed at the beginning of the outbreak had limited longer impacts upon beer and cider sales. A key reason being that, at home drinking is part of a routine for certain consumer cohorts in which they derive both pleasure and comfort. Something which most people have been looking for since the outbreak.”

Whilst the outlook for the beer industry is expected to lag behind pre-COVID-19 expectations, GlobalData highlighted that the immediate fallout, which posed a challenging landscape for big and small players alike, has largely levelled out. Consumers have shown a preference to fall back on familiar brands which they derive enjoyment from, with a willingness to pay a premium price, instead of switching to cheaper alternatives.