The Alcohol Industry in Data
We took a closer look at the alcohol industry, breaking down consumption and sales by alcohol brand, type and more.
Global Alcohol Consumption
About 446 billion liters of beer, wine, and spirits are consumed every year around the world. The majority of alcohol consumed are beer, lagers, and cider (nearly 400 billion liters), followed a distant second and third by wine (26 liters) and spirits (23 liters).
Alcohol Market Share in America
Americans prefer beer most over wine and spirits. In fact, 46 percent of alcohol consumption is beer, followed by spirits (37 percent) and wine (17 percent). Between 2000 and 2018, consumption of spirits has grown 28 percent, followed by a slight rise (6 percent) in wine. Consumption of beer, however, fell 18 percent during that time period.
Among spirits, U.S. consumers prefer vodka by a wide margin. Seventy-seven million 9-liter bottles of vodka are consumed every year, followed cordials and liqueurs (25 million) at a distant second. Rum (24 million), American whiskey (24 million), tequila (19 million), Canadian whiskey (17 million) and brandy/cognac (14 million) follow.
Best-Selling Alcohol Types
For wine drinkers, merlot rules. The red wine represents 23 percent of all wine Americans drink every year, followed by chardonnay (19 percent), cabernet (19 percent), pinot noir (17 percent), pinot grigio (16 percent) and rose (15 percent). Shiraz is the least consumed wine at 6 percent.
In 2018 alone, Americans drank nearly 1.2 billion cases of beer. The beer that a majority of Americans prefer is light beer (1.2 billion bottles), followed by super-premium and premium beer (371 million), craft beer (310 million), and popular beer (180 million). Malt liquor is the least consumed beer at 52 million.
Alcohol Industry Market Share
Popular Alcohol Brands
Among U.S. vodka drinkers, Smirnoff vodka is the clearly preferred choice –Americans consumed over 2.5 million cases in 2019 alone. Barefoot is the leading brand for wine drinkers, and when Americans reached for a beer, they were mostly like to reach for a Bud Light.
Addiction Occurs With
Other popular spirit brands include:
- Tito’s vodka (1.7 million cases)
- Captain Morgan’s rum (1.4 million cases)
- Bacardi rum (1.4 million cases)
- Fireball (1.3 million cases)
- Jim Beam American (1.27 million cases)
- Jack Daniels American (1.27 million cases)
- Crown Royal Canadian (1.1 million cases)
- Jameson Irish whiskey (.54 million cases)
- Hennessy Cognac (.28 million cases)
The most popular wine brands are:
- Sutter Home ($389 million in revenue)
- Woodbridge ($347 million)
- Franzia Box ($346 million)
- Yellow Tail ($264 million)
- Black Box ($245 million)
- Josh Cellars ($207 million)
- Kendall Jackson ($202 million)
- Apothic ($194 million)
- Chateau Ste. Michelle ($186 million).
The most popular beer brands include:
- Coors Light (15 million barrels sold)
- Miller Lite (13 million)
- Budweiser (11 million)
- Michelob Ultra Light (8.8 million)
- Corona Extra (8.6 million)
- Modelo Especial (8.2 million)
- Natural Light (6.7 million)
- Busch Light (6.2 million)
- Busch (4 million)
Global Alcohol Revenue
Anheuser-Busch InBev rules the beer industry. The company reported $54 billion in global revenues, followed only by Heineken Holding, which had a little more than half that revenue at $27 billion. Asahi Group Holdings came in third at $19 billion, followed by Kirin Holdings at $18 billion. Thai Beverage earned the least among the top seven producers at $8 billion.