Brewers returning to the floor with new flavours for beer lovers

October 21, 2020 | 09:00
Brewers are making plans to release new products to attract customers while at the same time striving to reach annual goals knocked by the unexpected pandemic and tightened local drink-driving laws.
brewers returning to the floor with new flavours for beer lovers
Bia Saigon Chill aims to refresh consumer tastebuds

Saigon Beer Alcohol Beverage Corporation (Sabeco) has announced its latest product in the Bia Saigon portfolio. Bia Saigon Chill is produced with a -2oC cold filtered technique, bringing a refreshing taste through unique tech.

The group’s general director Bennett Neo said that the birth of Bia Saigon Chill is an important milestone in Sabeco’s history. “It is an extension to our product range and is targeted at enlightened, optimistic, and sociable Vietnamese who strive hard in their lives, rising alongside Vietnam.”

In its last month reported, Sabeco witnessed a slight recovery in business results for the second quarter, with both revenues and profits much higher than the first quarter’s VND5 trillion ($217.4 million) of revenues and VND700 billion ($30.43 million) of profits. As such, net revenue rose by 45 per cent while earnings climbed 66 per cent, supported by the sales in May and June.

However, continuing pandemic uncertainties could slow down recovery across the whole sector.

Katsuhiko Usui, general director of Sapporo Vietnam, told VIR that the group is strengthening by bringing new values to customers. “Especially, we are focusing on the draft beer segment. Sapporo Vietnam has introduced the Sapporo Premium Beer 500ML can in the supermarket channel, and we also plan to launch new products to meet consumer needs.”

Although Usui previously admitted that it will be difficult for Sapporo to achieve any annual sales targets this year, the group would make efforts in improving work efficiencies and cutting costs. Beer companies are increasingly offering new products while focusing more on off-trade channels and modern trade channels in an attempt to stave off the complexities of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Elsewhere, HEINEKEN Vietnam launched non-alcoholic Heineken 0.0 in the country, in response to 2019’s Decree No.100/2019/ND-CP on administrative penalties for road traffic violations that took effect in January.

Under that, drunk car drivers can be fined between VND6-40 million ($260-1,750) if tests show that alcohol content exceeds 80mg per 100ml of blood or 0.4mg per litre of breath. Additionally, their licences could be revoked for up to two years, compared to just 4-6 months previously. Drunk motorcyclists could meanwhile see fines of $85-350.

Alexander Koch, managing director of HEINEKEN Vietnam, said in a press release that the company’s consumers are at the heart of what they do. “We see a trend of consumers around the world and also in Vietnam moving towards a more balanced and health-conscious lifestyle,” he said. “With Heineken 0.0, we are providing our Vietnamese consumers with a new option for all their drinking occasions, including ones where you cannot have a beer.”

Non-alcoholic beer is one of the fastest-growing segments worldwide, with sales expected to skyrocket to $25 billion by 2024, according to Global Market Insights.

SSI Securities Corporation predicted that by next year, the beer industry in Vietnam could recover 20 per cent from the estimated low base in 2020. Beer consumption in general, however, is likely to take several years to recover to pre-pandemic levels.

By Van Thu

What the stars mean:

★ Poor ★ ★ Promising ★★★ Good ★★★★ Very good ★★★★★ Exceptional