The sales volumes of Estonian beverage producer Saku Õlletehas dropped 13% on year in the first six months of 2018, due primarily to a steep drop in sales on Estonia's northern border.
"We can see a reduction of 77% in purchases by Finns compared to last year," Saku Õlletehas board member and sales director Jaan Härms told BNS. "The domestic market, where the hot summer has helped maintain a high demand for beverages, was in a minor decline as well."
Generally speaking, Härms said, the results for the first half of the year were strongly impacted by high alcohol excise duty rates in Estonia — in addition to the losses seen in purchases by Finns, another significant change has been an increase in sales on the Latvian border. According to the sales director, Saku Õlletehas' sales on the Latvian border have almost tripled compared to 2017 figures.
In comparison, the total sales of rival Estonian beverage producer A. Le Coq declined by 20% on year in the first half of 2018, from 67.1 million to 55.8 million litres, with sales on Estonia's northern border, i.e. cross-border sales primarily to Finland, falling almost fourfold, and sales on the country's southern border increasing fivefold.
A. Le Coq CEO Tarmo Noop said that the reduction in sales was offset to a large extent by the increase in exports, which grew by as much as 61%, from 8.5 million to 13.7 million litres.
Editor: Aili Vahtla