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  • China is the largest beer market in the world and a particularly hard one to crack.

  • Global brands have been desperate to sell more here, but you know what, it's really competitive.

  • International beer giants, like Heineken, Carlsberg and Annheuser-Beusch, are in an intense competition with the Chinese giants like Tsingtao and Snow.

  • Last year alone, the country consumed 46 billion liters of beer.

  • That's about twice as much as in the U.S.

  • The issue with this market, mostly because it's so competitive, is that it's really hard to make money.

  • Consumers here can buy beer for about 30 cents a can in supermarkets.

  • We're in Yao Ma Tei.

  • Historically, this is a place with a lot of local business. There's a night market.

  • Locals will come out here to eat some street food and drink some beer at night.

  • Chris Wong has been selling beer in the region for the past seven years to wholesale and individual consumers.

  • So a lot of people they enter into the China market, seeing a lot of people there, they see a pot of gold.

  • However, there's a lot of difficulties, right?

  • People are used to drinking very cheap commercial lagers, just as cheap as water.

  • International beer makers and start-ups alike want people to drink more expensive beer.

  • Like IPAs, wheat beers or just regular lagers popped in fancy bottles.

  • These drinks can make up to eleven times more money than the regular beer usually consumed in China.

  • So how do you convince people to spend more money on beer, especially at a time when the Chinese economy is slowing down?

  • First, you gotta tap into the culture.

  • We do about 1,000 liters per batch every day.

  • Production has been increasing constantly every month, for the last six years since we've been operating.

  • Rohit Dugar says that you can't succeed in the market without understanding Chinese consumers.

  • The Hong Kong based entrepreneur launched a line of craft beers, called Young Master, that sit at the very top end of the market.

  • His beers sell for up to 20 dollars at bars in large Chinese cities.

  • Something many brewers dream about.

  • He says his rivals don't have a plan like his.

  • There are small start-up, much larger breweries, they are viewing China as kind of a quick win.

  • The long-term success will be for people who are on the ground putting in fundamental effort.

  • So Dugart has developed a clear-cut strategy: make his beers look and taste familiar to Chinese drinkers.

  • The way we name our beers.

  • The illustrations from local scenes.

  • The aesthetics we use, everything is kind of informed by local culture.

  • This beer is called Cha Chaan Teng sour.

  • We added some salt-cured lime and it's a very common ingredient used locally.

  • People mix it with sodas and drink it in coffee shops.

  • - Cheers. - Cheers.

  • Ah that's good. Tastes like something I would drink, like after running a marathon.

  • But not all Chinese consumers are ready to shell out 20 bucks for a luxurious craft beer.

  • We asked Matteo Fantacchiotti...

  • Hey, how's it going?

  • Who manages sales for Carlsberg in Asia, to explain how his company does the job.

  • Blanc is quite a citrusy beer.

  • It pairs well with fine dining group experience.

  • Carlsberg sells a wide range of beers, and each one is marketed to suit different occasions.

  • This is the typical local beer in China.

  • So very light, going very well with hot pot and hot cuisine.

  • Here are some of Carlsberg's beers you can get at a grocery store.

  • From the low end to the premium.

  • The idea is to get people who've been drinking a Wusu for about a buck to upgrade to a Carlsberg.

  • The goal would be to gradually move them all the way up to a 3 dollar Brooklyn lager.

  • Beer makers are doing everything they can to stand out.

  • Brands put their logo on the tap right here in front of consumer's faces.

  • Corona has figured out that limes are key to grabbing people's attention, and Chinese consumers see it as a novelty.

  • It's one of the key reasons why Corona sales, in China, have surged about 25 times over the past four years.

  • Where beer comes from is important to Chinese drinkers.

  • Drinking a more premium international brand is a symbol of, first, you can afford it.

  • Secondly, you know what to drink. And the local brand will play a significant role because there is the pride, habit of,you know, drinking your local beer brand.

  • An example of super local beer, "Wind, Flower, Snow, Moon."

  • Carlsberg has been acquiring local craft breweries like this one in Yunnan.

  • Industry analysts say Chinese consumers are attracted by foreign brands, which has made some, like Budweiser, extremely successful in the region.

  • Beer makers want to appeal to Chinese palettes.

  • Remember that fermented lime beer, from that Hong Kong brewery?

  • Well, there's also pineapple flavored beer, and some brewers say their beers are made with wheat and clean water to give off a healthy impression.

  • So I didn't have to drink these beers while reporting this story, but I insisted on it.

  • You know, for the sake of journalistic due diligence.

  • It's not bad, it's fruity, pleasant.

  • I can get used to it.

  • These sales strategies have been used before in other parts of the world.

  • "We could've brewed our beer in a town you've never heard of."

  • And actually worked pretty well.

  • "Let them drink beer, ha ha ha."

  • But beer makers say it's even more important to get them right in China because if they don't plan properly, there can be consequences.

  • It's not proceeding with it's announced public offering...

  • For example, in July, Annheuser-Beusch InBev, the producer of Budweiser...

  • "China sales for them is a big deal."

  • ...dropped its plan for what would've been the year's biggest IPO.

  • The company says it flopped because of prevailing market conditions.

  • Investors worried that the strategy would not make enough money in Asia.

  • The intense competition between Chinese and international beer makers might scare boardrooms and investors across the world, but for Chinese drinkers, that only means one thing, a greater diversity of beers.

  • So consumers better hope that companies keep up the fight.

China is the largest beer market in the world and a particularly hard one to crack.


B1 中級

中国のビール市場に割って入っていくのは難しい! ( Why Breaking Into the Chinese Beer Market Is Almost Impossible | WSJ )

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    Fibby   に公開 2019 年 08 月 28 日