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New Data Show Beer Sales in Convenience Stores Grew By More Than $200 Million in 2011


For Immediate Release – April 17, 2012

Contact: Zach Lowe for The Beer Institute: (202) 777-3529

Jeff Lenard for NACS: (703) 518-4272

New Data Show Beer Sales in Convenience Stores Grew By More Than $200 Million in 2011

Convenience Stores Were the Leading Channel for Beer Sales Among Off-Premise Retailers

Washington, D.C. – The Beer Institute released new data today showing beer sales in convenience stores rose by 1.3 percent in 2011 totaling more than $16.7 billion in sales. Convenience stores were responsible for nearly 17 percent of total beer sales in 2011, comprising the largest share of off-premise sales last year.

“Convenience stores offer beer consumers accessible, speedy service,” said Joe McClain, president of the Beer Institute. “Convenience stores are growing in numbers, opening for longer hours, and offering a wide variety of brand options to our consumers. Growing convenience store beer sales show that consumers appreciate the ease of service this channel provides. ”

“Our strong performance in 2011, including beer sales, shows that our industry’s core convenience offer – especially one-stop shopping and speed of service for refreshments, food and fuel – continues to resonate with our customers and attract shoppers to our stores,” said NACS Chairman Tom Robinson, president of Santa Clara, California-based Robinson Oil Corporation.

The rise in convenience store beer sales is concurrent with continuing growth in the convenience store industry. The U.S. convenience store count increased to a record 148,126 stores as of December 31, 2011, a 1.2 percent increase from the previous year. Based on these figures and U.S. Census data, there is approximately one convenience store per every 2,100 residents.

Overall, the Beer Institute data indicate that beer sales rose more than 2 percent in 2011, surpassing $98 billion in total retail sales, highlighting beer’s continued strength within the alcohol beverage sector. According to market research company Nielsen, the increase in sales revenue can be attributed to the high-end beer business. The sale of imports, crafts and above-premium beers sold off-premise was up nearly 3 percent.

According to the latest Beer Serves America study, the beer industry directly and indirectly supports approximately 1.8 million American jobs including those at our nation’s 547,000 beer-selling retail establishments.


The Beer Institute, established in 1986, is the national trade association for the brewing industry, representing both large and small brewers, as well as importers and industry suppliers. The Institute is committed to the development of sound public policy and to the values of civic duty and personal responsibility:

Founded in 1961 as the National Association of Convenience Stores, NACS ( is the international association for convenience and fuel retailing. The U.S. convenience store industry, with more than 148,000 stores across the country, posted $681 billion in total sales in 2011, of which $486 billion were motor fuels sales. NACS has 2,200 retail and 1,600 supplier member companies that do business in nearly 50 countries.