Berlin (dpa) – Germans might pride themselves on the beer their country brews, but that hasn’t stopped sales from sinking to their lowest level since the nation’s unification, nearly 25 years ago.

Augustiner is the oldest brewery in Munich - photo: dpa
Augustiner is the oldest brewery in Munich – photo: dpa

The nation’s brewers sold 94.6 million hectoliters of beer in 2013, a fall of 2 per cent compared with 2012, the statistics office said Thursday.

This is partly the result of a rise in the popularity of non-alcoholic beers and beer mixed with lemonade, cola and fruit juices, the statistics office said.

“The sustained decline since 2007 has continued,” the statistics office said.

Germans’ consumption of their nation’s beer declined by 1.7 per cent last year to 79.7 million hectoliters.

“One reason for the sharp drop in sales in Germany was the long winter, which was followed by a mixed summer,” said the German Brewers’ Federation chief Holger Eichele, who also pointed to the ageing population as contributing to the decline.

However, Eichele said the drop in beer sales in Germany was being compensated by “encouraging trends” in the United States and China.

Mixed beer drinks and alcohol-free beers represented 4.5 per cent of beer sales in Germany last year, compared with 1.9 per cent in 2012, the statistics office said.

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