Draft and bottled beers, two of the most consumed beer types in Ethiopia, have seen one of the sharpest price increases this week followed by an upward push in retail prices.
According to Meta Abo and BGI Ethiopia, two of the most prominent local beer bottlers, the time has come to make upward adjustments in the prices in the face of the recent currency devaluation and fuel price surge that affected the production cost. A barrel of BGI’s St. George draft beer, which used to sell for 310 birr, now cost 335 birr, showing an increase of 8 percent, while a case of the same brand bottled beer increased by 30 birr.
On the other hand, a barrel of Meta draft beer has gone up 65 birr, registering a 22.8 percent hike from its previous price. The price for a case of Meta’s bottled beer as well followed the same trend, growing from 110.75 birr to 142 birr at the factory gate.
Essayas Adera, marketing manager of BGI Ethiopia, told The Reporter that the recent price surge is chiefly attributed to the rise in the price of imported inputs. The currency devaluation and fuel price have had a domino effect on the cost of production, while local supply of inputs are not adequate enough to sustain production at the moment, he said.
Despite 1.6 million hecto-liters of beer production in 2010, BGI, Meta and other breweries are not yet able to satisfy local demand, according to an industry survey conducted this year.