Ghanaians and their counterparts across the globe have consumed over 2.62 billion bottles of beer by the end of 2013, a latest report released by the world’s largest statistics portal (Statista), has revealed.
In 2011, the global beer consumption amounted to about 2.57 billion bottles (1.93 billion hectoliters), up from 1.73 billion bottles (1.3 billion hectoliters) in 1998.
Beer is a widely consumed beverage around the world, made out of water, malt, hops and yeast as basic ingredients. It is the most popular alcoholic beverage worldwide, and the third most popular drink overall after water and tea.
The report by the New York-based company shows that the value of beer intake is on the rise due to an increased amount of under-aged drinkers and an increasing variety of beers.
“The world’s total beer consumption was about 1.97 billion hectoliters (2.62 billion bottles) in 2013. The total beer production of Africa alone amounted to about 132.51 million hectoliters in 2013,” the report stated.
In Ghana, the pattern of beer consumption, according to industry sources, falls under two broad categories. Beer is drunk by people whose habit it is to drink at least one bottle every day.These are people who say, they are winding down after a hard day’s work. They may drink at home or at a drinking bar on their way home from work.
Matthew, a graphic designer, says he has no specific reason for drinking beer. I drink beer for the fun of it. It has become part of me and I enjoy drinking it. After a hard day’s work, it is only fair to cool down with chilled beer.
In the second category, beer is drunk during events such as funerals, meetings, launches, parties and such social gatherings.
This alcohol intake has been known to contribute to the high rate of death through accidents by drunk drivers. Women also cause their babies to be born with birth defects by drinking without caution during the gestation period. Even though beer only contains around five per cent alcohol, it still takes its effects on a developing foetus.
The latest report did not provide specific statistics on Ghana. However data provided by the beer industry in Ghana indicates that in 2005, Ghanaians have consumed a total of about 80 million bottles of beer and over 156 million bottles of stout.
Given that the population of Ghana at that time was 20 million, it means that statistically, every person- old, young, male, female- drank at least four bottles of beer and about eight bottles of stout.
The report indicated that in 2004, Ghanaians quaffed 13,722,876 bottles of Club Beer, 52,480,476 bottles of Star Beer, 11,698,080 bottles of Gulder and 2,069,436 bottles of ABC.
And for stout, Ghanaians got through 41,898,084 bottles of Castle Milk Stout, 110,993,328 bottles of Guinness and 3,226,605 bottles of Guinness Extra Smooth.
The year 2004 figures were up by about 10 per cent over the previous year. In 2003, Ghanaians drank 15,646,716 bottles of Club Beer, 50,773,440 bottles of Star Beer, 10,024,476 bottles of Gulder and 2,611,356 bottles of ABC.
Global beer industry- leading producers
The Global leading countries in beer production are China, the United States and Brazil. The United States was the second leading country in worldwide beer production with an amount of about 224 million hectoliters.
The global beer market is characterized by key players such as AB Inbev, SABMiller, Heineken and Carlsberg. Based on generated sales, AB InBev captured a market share of about 19 percent in 2011.
In 2013, Nigeria was ranked as second leading beer producing African country with an amount of about 26.5 million hectoliters. The total beer production of Africa amounted to about 132.51 million hectoliters in 2013.
Research shows that people have been brewing this famous beverage as early as several thousand years before the Common Era.
Recent studies claim that the production and consumption of beer was a major factor in the development of civilized society, arguing that the important and often spiritual role beer played in traditional ceremonies and feasts contributed to the development of ritual and tradition and consequently the development of society at large.
The American beer palette has undergone changes in recent years. More and more consumers are turning to craft beer over the well-established name brands. In general, a craft beer comes from a small, independently owned brewery that uses traditional brewing methods and focuses on manufacturing beer with a unique taste and quality rather than on mass production. More and more of these breweries have appeared in the beer landscape in the last few years.