Tough trading hits SAB Miller volumes

SAB Miller has recorded a 3% fall in lager volumes in Europe in the year to the end of March.

The company – whose brands include Peroni and Pilsner Urquell – said it had faced a particularly challenging first half impacted by “generally weak” economic conditions.

Many of the company’s brands are continuing to do well in the UK market but it has faced tough problems in its bigger markets in eastern Europe, with Poland down 4% and the Czech Republic falling 6%.

On an organic basis, SAB said total lager volumes for the year were 2% ahead of the previous year, with growth of 3% in the fourth quarter and all divisions other than North America growing sales in the second half.