the growth of Buckler to various
factors: "NA beers represent a
growing segment in the United States.
The product is being given better
marketing support. We have achieved
almost coast-to-coast distribution for
Buckler and consumers appreciate
the product's taste."
Murphy's Irish Stout is also
making good headway in the United
States. The stout segment is growing
and the American consumer is in
creasingly interested in the quality
brew from Cork, Southern Ireland.
Indeed, consumer appreciation for
Murphy's Irish Stout is also growing
in other parts of the world, for
example in the Middle East, and also
in Australia, where sales of Murphy's
have climbed to respectable levels
without any substantial marketing
and other European brands in a more
disadvantageous position compared
to Mexican and Canadian beers. In
contrast to European brewers,
breweries in Mexico and Canada will
no longer have to pay import duties
under the NAFTA agreement. How
ever, Frans van der Minne says that
we should not overstate this problem.
"In my estimation the impact on sales
will be negligible."
One striking trend is the growth in
sales of Buckler in the United States.
Until recently non-alcohol (NA) beers
had not been able to gain a solid
foothold in the States. American
consumers were not attracted to alco
hol-free beer, since they perceived
the light beers as offering the same
benefits as alcohol-free beer.
Meanwhile that situation has
changed. Mr Van der Minne ascribes