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Germans are drinking less and less beer. Blame grandpa not weather

AP Photo
Not half full.
By Matt Phillips
Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

German beer sales hit their lowest level in two decades during the first quarter.  And bad weather was definitely part of the issue. (Beer consumption is closely tied to weather. If it’s too chilly, people just tend to drink less.) In fact, as German beer sales have hit a series of lows in recent years, weather has received the bulk of the blame.

But it’s clear that there’s something else going on, as well. And that’s likely demographics. Like many other Western countries, longer lives and fewer births are making Germany a rapidly aging society. Here’s a glimpse—from an official report—of how things are trending demographically for Deutschland. And the oldsters just don’t put away as many steins as they used to.

So is there any hope for boosting beer sales? Well, yes. Soccer. Recent positive bumps in beer sales were tied to major European football shindigs such as the FIFA World Cup finals held in Germany in the Summer of 2006, which gave beer sales a fillip.

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