By James Atkinson
An eight per cent decline in lager volumes can be attributed to a tough few months in the off-premise sector for Carlton & United Breweries, according to parent company SABMiller.
The fall in CUB's volumes for the six months ended September 30 was in line with the result reported by SABMiller last quarter.
"While our share of draught remained firm, a reduction in off-premise share reflected more constrained customer programmes during the first half of the year and our focus on revenue optimisation," SABMiller said yesterday in a trading update.
The result came as CUB announced that stubbies, cans and kegs of the new 4.9 per cent ABV Victoria Bitter had begun to arrive in pubs and liquor outlets across the country, after shortages of the country's number two beer were reported last week.
Carlton & United Breweries (CUB) general manager of Victoria Bitter, Richard Oppy, said that publicans and retailers had inundated CUB with requests for stocks of the new brew since the change was announced back in September.
"The response to news of the brew returning to full flavour and full strength has meant we’ve pulled forward the rollout of the 4.9 per cent brew a week earlier than planned."