Exports lift German brewers

German beer sales climbed in 2004, halting a five-year slide that worsened in 2003 when the country introduced a complex system of deposits on cans and bottles.

About 10.6 billion liters (2.8 billion gallons) of beer were sold in Germany in 2004, up 0.2% from 2003, with growing exports compensating for deteriorating sales at home. Exports climbed 13.1% to 13.9 billion liters (3.67 billion gallons). Within Germany, sales were down 1.5% to 9.19 billion liters (2.43 billion gallons).

Beer sales have contracted 15% in the last 10 years.

Germany ranks as the third highest per capita consumer of beer in world, behind Ireland and the Czech Republic