What’s shakin’ in #1 beer channel in 2017? It too is soft, changing picture as trading up surges, economy segment firms simultaneously. C-stores still about 28 share of industry volume, 1/3 of off-premise volume, Beer Inst economist Michael Uhrich estimates. Channel volume -0.7% yr-to-date thru Sep 9 in Nielsen scans. That follows 0.2% gain in 2016, 0.5% gains previous 2 yrs. Dollar sales up just 0.9% this yr, following 2.5-3.5% gains in previous 3 yrs. So, less volume and less pricing, not a formula for improved results.
Even so, trading up stayed strong in c-stores. Above premium picked up 2.7 share of $$ (to 37.8, still well behind above premium’s near-58 share of grocery $$), 2 share of volume. Premium biz shed 2.2 share of c-store $$ this yr. Economy lost just 0.5 share of $$ in channel and held volume share. AB and MC each off 2-3% ($$ and volume) in c-stores, Constellation +13-15%. Heineken and Boston each doin’ better in c-stores than grocery and overall. Indeed, each built dollar sales in c-stores, tho their $$ down across scans. Diageo and Mike’s outperforming as FMBs rival premiums in c-stores.