Alcohol unaffected by recession in Russia

Last Updated: Sat, Sep 18, 2010 01:30 hrs

Moscow, Sep 18 (IANS) Production of alcohol such as vodka, beer and wine in Russia has not been affected by the global economic crisis, according to the federal statistics bureau Rosstat.

Manufacturers in Russia have increased production, with factories producing 7.8 decalitres of vodka in August this year, 7.8 percent more than in August 2009.

Table wine production rose to 4.8 million decalitres, or 21.8 percent year-on-year.

Breweries increased their output in August by 16.8 percent, to 109 million decalitres. However, beer production fell 4.9 percent since the start of the year.

The Russian Brewers Union has forecast 10-15 percent decrease of beer production till the end of 2010, due to a 20-percent price hike.

However, production of cognac fell by 28.4 percent year-on-year, and by 21.6 percent since the start of 2010, Xinhua reported citing local media.

Experts say the government's decision to increase excise duties on beer has shifted people's alcohol consumption toward stronger and cheaper beverages.