Top US Beer Brand Stats (2009 Update)
A few years back your humble BeerFathers wrote a post about the Top US Beer Brands for 2007. We thought it was a good time to update that post. This information comes from the March 2010 issue of Beverage Industry magazine and is for U.S. sales for 2009. Ready the new bullet points:
Top Craft Beer Brands 2009:
- Sierra Nevada Pale Ale (unchanged from 2007)
- Sam Adams Boston Lager (unchanged from 2007)
- Sam Adams Seasonal (unchanged from 2007)
- New Belgium Fat Tire Amber Ale (unchanged from 2007)
- Shiner Bock (up from #6 in 2007)
- Widmer Hefeweizen (up from #7 in 2007)
- Sam Adams Variety Pack (not listed, per se, in 2007, but Sam Adams Brewmaster Collection was #8)
- Sam Adams Light (down from #5 in 2007)
- Sierra Nevada Seasonal (not listed in 2007)
- Deschutes Mirror Pond Pale Ale (not listed in 2007)
The BeerFathers Notes on Top Craft Beer Brands:
- Same as in 2007, Sam Adams gets to lump its collections together, like seasonals and the variety pack, to show up as one brand, which is quite misleading.
- I wonder if you lumped together some of New Belgium’s seasonal offerings like Skinny Dip, 2 Below, etc if they’d show up on this list like the Sam Adams collections do? It’s noted that New Belgium Seasonal sales are up 40% for 2009.
- Though the overall beer category was flat in dollar sales for 2009, the craft beer category was up 12%. Maybe taste does win?
- Hooray for one of our favorites – Shiner Bock – moving up the list to push out Sam Adams Light for the #5 spot!
- Never heard of the Mirror Pond Pale Ale – but congrats for knocking off Pyramid Hefeweizen Ale from the #10 spot in 2007. Substandard hefes have no place on this list, no offense Widmer.
Top Imported Beer Brands 2009:
- Corona Extra (unchanged from 2007)
- Heineken (unchanged from 2007)
- Modelo Especial (up from #6 in 2007)
- Tecate (unchanged from 2007)
- Corona Light (down from #3 in 2007)
- Heineken Premium Light Lager (down from #5 in 2007)
- Labatt Blue (up from #9 in 2007)
- Dos Equis XX Lager Especial (not listed in 2007)
- Stella Artois Lager (not listed in 2007)
- Newcastle Brown Ale (down from #7 in 2007)
TheBeerFathers Notes on Top Imported Beer Brands:
- Wow! Guinness Draught was knocked completely off the 2007 list (was in #8 spot). Has Guinness lost a bit of it’s luster?
- Heineken continues to prove marketing can overcome all obstacles, including skunky taste.
- We address the Dos Equis rise up the list in a separate post about their spokesperson – The Most Interesting Man in the World.
- The highest rated beer on this list according to RateBeer.com is Newcastle Brown Ale with a 49. No beer on this list is above the 50th percentile and you’d be shocked at the score for the rest of them. Let’s put it this way – Stella Artois, with a 15, is the only other beer on the list that ranks in double digits. One beer on the list is a zero (bonus points if you’re the first to comment with the correct beer that has a zero without looking at RateBeer!). All the single digit beers do have one thing in common though – heavy marketing dollars. Let that be a lesson to you MBA students out there.
Top Beers by Brand 2009:
- Bud Light (unchanged from 2007) – 28.3% market share
- Budweiser (unchanged from 2007) – 11.9% market share
- Coors Light (up from #4 in 2007) – 9.9% market share
- Miller Lite (down from #3 in 2007) – 9.2% market share
- Natural Light (up from #6 in 2007) – 6.1% market share
- Corona Extra (down from #5 in 2007) – 5.3% market share
- Busch Light (up from #8 in 2007) – 3.7% market share
- Busch (up from #9 in 2007) – 3.4% market share
- Heineken (down from #7 in 2007) – 3.3% market share
- Miller High Life (unchanged from 2007) – 2.7% market share
The BeerFathers Notes on Top Beers by Brand:
- All the same players as 2007 – no new entrants crack the list.
- Budweiser absolutely dominates the brands with over 40% of the market. Pretty incredible.
- Anheuser-Busch owns 53.4% of the US beer market – in 2007 they had 41.8% of it.
- There’s not a single company on this list whose owners are headquartered in the United States.
- The highest rated beer on the list at RateBeer.com? Forget it. Okay, it’s Heineken. It has a 6. Out of 100.
- We think Heineken is rated too high with its 6 out of 100.
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