Craft Hopping – Majors in the Tank

Overall beer market down for third year in a row

While the craft beer industry has been, well, hopping along quite well thank you, the overall beer market has been, excuse the pun again; in the tank.

Last year marked the third consecutive year of diminishing growth rates in the beer industry, dropping 2.1 percent. According to the Beverage Information Group’s recently released 2010 Beer Handbook, the beer industry’s downturn can be directly attributed to the decline in the light beer segment. Light beer, which accounts for a 52.8 percent share of the U.S. beer market, posted its first negative year since its beginning 30 years ago.

Other segments of the beer industry differed in their 2009 results. Imports declined 6.9 percent, while the craft beer segment increased 7 percent.