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What Country Exports The Most Beer

Beer exports refer to the value of beer that is shipped out of a country to other countries.

The value is calculated by subtracting the imported price from the exported price, along with associated costs like freight, insurance, and packaging.

The data that informs these calculations comes from government trade agencies and market research firms which compile reports (often annually) on beer export values.

Global Beer Exports Overview

In recent years, global beer exports have experienced significant growth due to the fact that countries around the world are beginning to recognize the value of this exported commodity.

In 2017 alone, total global beer exports increased by almost 8%, reaching an all-time high of more than $27 billion! This growth was driven in part by a surge in demand for specialty craft beers and other unique brews from different parts of the world.

The U.S. and Its Role in Beer Exports

Although it may come as a surprise to some, the United States is one of the top players in terms of global beer exports. In 2017, American brewers shipped nearly $2 billion worth of beer overseas — representing 7% of total worldwide beer exports!

This is largely due to Americans’ increasing taste for craft beers from around the world, as well as increasing demand for American styles internationally.

Who Holds the Crown for The Largest Beer Exporter?

Germany takes the crown when it comes to overall beer exports — shipping nearly $3 billion worth of brews abroad in 2017!

This accounts for more than 10% of all global beer exports and cements Germany’s position as one of the world’s leading exporters when it comes to this popular beverage.

Top 10 Countries with Highest Beer Exports

  • Germany – $2.9B
  • Spain – $1B
  • Belgium – $728M
  • Netherlands – $713M
  • China – $638M
  • Czech Republic – $481M
  • United Kingdom – $467M
  • Mexico -$362M
  • Austria -$321M
  • United States -$200M

Belgium: Per Capita Leader in Beer Exports

Despite its relatively small size, Belgium stands out when it comes to per capita beer exports — shipping more than 10 gallons per person every year!

Indeed, Belgium has become well known for its wide variety of beers — ranging from light lagers and Belgian ales to wheat beers and dark lambics — which appeal to drinkers across many different countries around the globe.

As such, this tiny country has established itself as a leading player when it comes to international beer sales.

Factors That Help or Hinder a Country’s Ability To Export Beer

Several factors can affect a country’s ability or willingness to export beer abroad including climate (warmer weather may lead people away from wanting heavier or darker beers):

  • regulations on alcohol production/distribution
  • taxes imposed on foreign imports
  • import/export licenses required
  • ease/costs associated with the shipment
  • local taste preferences; age restrictions on certain products

Needless to say, these factors can make or break a country’s ability or desire when it comes to exporting its products abroad — regardless if they involve consumable beverages like beer or any other type of product!


Overall, it’s clear that there is now an increasingly global economy when it comes to exporting beers around the world.

As greater numbers of people look outside their own countries for unique flavors and styles that can’t be found at home—including consumers who enjoy craft brews—we will likely continue seeing an upswing in international exports as we did in 2017 with global totals nearing $27 billion!

It will be fun (and tasty!) to watch how these trends continue evolving in the coming years!

Author Image Fabian
I’m Fabian, homebrewer and beer taster. I’m also the editor of Beer100. I love travelling the world and trying out new handcraft beer and different beer styles. I’m not an expert in brewing beer, but I know a few things about beer, which I share on this blog. If you need help or have a question, please comment below.

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