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Sorghum beer demand grows

Markets
Zimbabwe Stock Exchange-listed Delta Corporation revenue for the half-year to September was up 5% compared to the same period last year

Zimbabwe Stock Exchange-listed Delta Corporation revenue for the half-year to September was up 5% compared to the same period last year driven by growth in opaque beer volumes and non-alcoholic beverages.

Business Reporter

In its trading update for the second quarter, the company said while consumer demand for lager beers continued to decline following an upward revision in excise duty last year, demand for sorghum beer had grown.

“Consumer demand has remained generally soft, a trend that has been evident since the beginning of the calendar year. Against this background, we report a 4% growth in total beverage volume for both the quarter and the six months to September 2013, compared to the same period last year,” the company said in a statement.

“Lager beer has continued to decline and is down 12% to prior year for the quarter and 10% for the six months. Sparkling beverages are up 4% for the quarter and 8% for the six months. Sorghum beer registered a growth of 13% for the quarter and is up 9% for the half-year driven by Chibuku Super and the move by consumers to value product offerings. Maheu is up 42% to prior year for the quarter and 57% for the six months.”

Analysts say demand for lager is further expected to decline due to the recent increase in prices as well as low disposable incomes as companies continue to fold.

Last Monday, the price of beer according to Delta, increased by up to 20c.

Brown bottle quarts will now sell at $1,75 from $1,55, while green 660ml bottles are now $1,80 from $1,75.

Delta Corporation, 38% owned by global brewing giant SABMiller, reported a $104 million after-tax profit for the full year to March compared to $72 million during the same period last year — driven by strong sales of premium lager and non-alcoholic beverages.