Imported beer flourishes in Canada’s On Premise but spirits sales experience declines

New data from CGA by NIQ’s exclusive On Premise Measurement (OPM) service reveals a mixed picture of trading in Canada’s On Premise, with beer outperforming spirits volume sales and particularly good growth for imported brands.
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OPM, which provides a complete read and expert analysis of beer and spirits’ sales, distribution and share across Canada’s On Premise, shows total beer sales in the period ending March 2024 vs YA’s volume dropped by –1.8%. Spirits sales have meanwhile fallen –4.6%.


OPM reveals important nuances in segments of the beer market, including a –5.0% drop in volumes in the craft category. Sales of domestic beers also fell year-on-year, by –1.7%. By contrast, volumes of imported beers rose by 1.6%. It gained 0.8 percentage points of total beer sales share over the 12-month period. This correlates with the trend of consumers opting for quality over quantity in the On Premise, and viewing the import category as the one that offers best value for money.


OPM also provides in-depth breakdowns of sales by region to help suppliers understand volumes for the channel and better direct strategies to reflect true On Premise sales. Import beer had its greatest share of total beer sales in both Ontario (29.7%) and Quebec (29.6%), While being smaller in size in western regions, both Alberta and British Columbia have recorded growth in import beer.


Mitch Stefani, CGA by NIQ’s client solutions director – Americas, said: “Import beer continues to be a positive story for the total beer category within the On Premise, as seen in other markets such as the US. As consumers continue to allocate their spend diligently, import beer’s premium offerings allow consumers to opt for quality products, whilst seeking value for money.”


To discover more about CGA by NIQ’s OPM solution, contact Mitch Stefani at or visit

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