Americans Drank 3.345 Billion Cases of Alcohol in 2018

IWSR press release preview

Discover the IWSR's latest press release on American's drinking metrics of 2018, and learn more on which categories (and the why behind each) are providing new opportunities for the global beverage alcohol industry.


This is a preview of our full press release. You can read more of this on the Press Releases page of our website.


New York, NY – American consumers drank more distilled spirits and wine in 2018, but total beverage alcohol consumption in the United States declined for the third consecutive year, as a result of continued weakening beer volume.

In preliminary figures released today by the IWSR, the leading authority on data and analysis of the global beverage alcohol market, total alcohol volume in the U.S. declined -0.8% last year to 3.345 billion 9-liter cases, which is slightly worse than the -0.7% slip the year prior.

These initial 2018 category results for the U.S. market are part of the IWSR U.S. Beverage Alcohol Review (USBAR) database, available to IWSR’s global customers.

“Spirits and wine showed slight growth in 2018, but those category increases weren’t as high as previous years. It’s clear that Americans are drinking less overall, which is likely a result of the continued trend toward health and wellness,” said Brandy Rand, IWSR’s U.S. President and global Chief Marketing Officer.


Beer Market Share Declines, Craft Beer Rises
As beer volumes have declined, so has the category’s share of the total U.S. alcohol market. In 2018, beer commanded 78.3% of U.S. alcohol volume, down from 78.9% in 2017. Consumer interest in craft beer remains healthy, however, with a 2018 increase of +4.7%, and a continued rise in on-site consumption at domestic breweries.

24th Consecutive Year of Wine Growth
In 2018 wine achieved its 24th consecutive year of volume growth in the U.S., aided by more than 13,000 wineries in the country, a number which increased by almost 1,000 in 2018. The still wine segment, which commands 87.3% of the total wine category, was up only 0.2%. Sparkling wine, led by prosecco (+11%), increased by 4.3%.




Press contact: Greg Cohen –, +1 917 714 8237

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About the IWSR US Beverage Alcohol Review

The IWSR US Beverage Alcohol Review (US BAR) is the most comprehensive source in the United States covering the entire
beverage alcohol universe: spirits, beer, wine, cider and the important craft segment. Available as an interactive online dashboard in addition to a comprehensive written report, the US BAR includes consumer demographics, state data, five year forecasts by category, brand advertising spends, all beverage alcohol brand volume and value data, new products, innovation and trend insights, e-commerce data, and more.


About the IWSR

The IWSR is the leading source of data and intelligence on the alcoholic beverage market. The IWSR’s database, essential to the industry, quantifies the global market of wine, spirits, beer, cider and mixed drinks by volume and value in 157 countries, and provides insight into short- and long-term trends, including five-year volume and value forecasts. The IWSR tracks overall consumption and trends at brand, price segment and category level. Our data is used by the major international wine, spirits and beer companies, as well as financial and alcoholic beverage market suppliers. The IWSR’s unique methodology allows us to get closer to what is actually consumed and better understand how markets work. Our analysts travel the world in order to meet over 1,600 local professionals to capture market trends and the ‘why’ behind the numbers.

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