Is cannabis to blame for slumping beer sales?

Sales of suds experience largest drop in seven years as cannabis continues to grow in popularity.

Canada’s beer business is looking a little flat.

The industry experienced its largest drop in sales in seven years in 2019, with domestic and imported beer purchases falling by 3 percent from the previous year, according to Marijuana Business Daily.

Domestic beer felt the brunt of the decline, with sales dropping in each of the final eight months of the year and in 11 out of 12 months in 2019.

Sales in December stood at 68,000 hectolitres (hL), down 4 percent from the same month in 2018. Marijuana sales, on the other hand, have been moving in the opposite direction.

While the country’s cannabis industry has fallen short of the lofty projections initially touted by analysts, a report by Statistics Canada shows that some $907.8 million worth of regulated cannabis was sold online and in retail stores between October 2018 and September 2019.

More cannabis was sold in Ontario than any other province or territory, totalling $216.8 million. Alberta, the province with by far the most stores, sold $195.7 million, just edging out sales in Quebec.

Recreational cannabis more than doubled from $53 million in November 2018, to $135 million by the following November.

It was a trend that beer manufacturers foresaw when they began cutting deals with cannabis producers to infuse their beverages with the popular plant in a bid to reap the rewards of the emerging industry. But the creation of a new line of elevated beverages has proven more complicated than anticipated, and companies such as Canopy Growth have been forced to delay the new offerings, to the frustration of shareholders and eager consumers alike.

Read the full article at TheGrowthOp

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