The National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA) has released its Beer Buyers Index (BPI) for December 2022. Not only did the entire country set a new low temperature record in December, but the beer buyers index also recorded its lowest index reading yet. December's BPI reading was 30, with the "risk" inventory index at 51.
A look at the segments in December:
1. The imports index was the only component to show volume expansion, with a December reading of 54, 19 points lower than the December 2021 reading of 74. While still above 50, the import component has been trending down month-on-month in 2022.
2. The craft index was 24, well below the 60 in December 2021, and has reached its lowest point since 2015.
3. The reading for the premium lights index was 31, also down from 65 in December 2021.
4. The premium regular segment index was 28, down from 51 in December 2021.
5. The below premium segment was 42, up 4 percentage points from 38 in December 2021, and it remains the only segment reporting a higher reading than 2021.
6. The FMB/seltzer segment continued to contract, falling to 26 in December, compared to 36 in December 2021.
7. Finally, the cider segment reported a reading of 26 compared to a December 2021 reading of 45.
The industry's sourcing behavior can best be described as slow and cautious in the face of changing retailer and consumer demands, an appropriate outlook and strategy for distributors.