Beer sales are taking a hit in states where marijuana is legal.
So far this year, beer volumes have dropped roughly 2% in Colorado, Oregon, and Washington, which have all legalized recreational pot, according to Neilsen data cited in a recent report from Cowen & Co.
At the same time, marijuana consumption has grown in those states.
The data indicates that many beer drinkers are swapping their six-packs for marijuana instead, and that has major implications for the beer industry — especially for makers of cheaper beers like Anheuser-Busch and Molson Coors Brewing Company.
“Mainstream beer” including Bud Light, Coors Light, Miller Lite, is “under siege” from legal marijuana, with volumes down 4.4% in the states studied, according to Cowen and Co. analysts.
Craft beer sales growth is slowing in those states, but not to the same degree.