Russians may face a shortage of alcohol ahead of the New Year due to the mass exodus of foreign alcohol producers and logistics difficulties caused by sanctions restrictions. Domestic manufacturers are trying to replace foreign brands, however, in terms of the breadth of the range, they will definitely not be able to do this in such a short time, and the prices for “Russian analogues” due to the fall in competition will be much higher. Izvestia writes about this with reference to data from the Association of Retail Companies (AKORT).
Stocks of foreign alcohol in Russia are coming to an end, and new deliveries of famous brands are not expected in the near future, ACORT notes. We are talking about whiskey brands Aberfeldy, Dewars, Jack Daniels and Grants, ends with Bacardi rum and liqueurs from Baileys and Sheridan. Stocks of European brands of cognac and tequila are rapidly declining, and there is no worthy alternative to commodity items in Russia - Russian analogues are simply not enough.
“We see a serious reduction in the range of imported alcohol: the representation of whiskey on the shelves has decreased by 50%, champagne - by 95%, imported beer - by 40%, and other categories - by 35%. Now the chains are practically selling out their inventory, and in the next two months we may face a shortage of popular products,” Igor Karavaev, chairman of the AKORT presidium, told the publication.
Back in the spring, American Brown-Forman (Jack Daniel's and Finlandia), British Diageo (Johnnie Walker, Bell's, White Horse, Smirnoff, Sheridan's, Captain Morgan, Guinness, Gordon's) left the Russian market, problems began with Bacardi (Martini and Chinzano), which did not leave the Russian market, but on the contrary, intends to restore supplies to the country. AKORT warns that the drop in the alcoholic assortment may undermine retail chains, whose revenue is significantly dependent on alcohol sales. Moreover, there is a real risk of an increase in counterfeit and low-quality alcohol on the shelves.
“Some part of the demand may shift to other categories, but there is a serious risk that the consumer will try to look for alcohol in the shadow sales channels without finding the usual drink on the store shelf,” Karavaev is sure.
Rosalkogolregulirovanie (RAP) claims that there will be no shortage of alcohol on the eve of the New Year. The agency is confident that Russian producers will be able to offer the Russians a sufficient amount of alcohol and meet demand. This position is supported by the growth of alcohol production by Russian companies - since the beginning of the year it has increased by 12.3%. However, business still doubts the success of the domestic alcohol industry and asked the Ministry of Industry and Trade to expand parallel imports to foreign alcohol.
At the moment, the idea is stuck in the Ministry of Finance, which continues to assess the risks. Experts say that allowing parallel imports of foreign brands of alcoholic products will create the risk of filling the Russian market with counterfeit products, as well as low-quality alcohol or outright fakes that will pose a real threat to the lives of Russians.