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Iceland Mag

Food & Drink

2015 a record year for Christmas beer: Still nearly 100,000 bottles will to be poured down the drain

By Staff

  • Kald Brewery Only 700 of the 170,000 bottles shipped by Kaldi this holiday season will be destroyed. Overall, however, nearly 100,000 bottles of Christmas beer will be poured down the drain. Photo/Rúnar Þór Björnsson.

The 2015 Holiday season saw record sales of Christmas beer. According to the local news site 745,000 litres (163,000 gallons) of Christmas beer were sold over the holiday season. This represents a 11.4% increase over 2014 when 669,000 litres (147,000 gallons) were sold.

The Christmas beer is removed from the shelves of the ÁTVR state monopoly liquor stores on January 6, and any unsold beer shipped back to the manufacturers. Since few people buy Christmas beer after the end of Christmas, most of the beer that’s shipped back will simply be destroyed. Nearly 33,000 litres (7,000 gallons), or 100,000 bottles of Christmas beer are thus set to be destroyed.

Read more: Minister of finance hopes to save all that Christmas beer from being poured down the drain

Judged by volume sold the most popular Christmas beer this year was the Tuborg Christmas beer, which sold 300,000 litres (65,000 gallons), representing nearly 40% of all Christmas beer sold this holiday season. The second most popular Christmas beer was Viking Christmas beer, followed by Thule Christmas beer. Jólagull and Jólakaldi, the Christmas brews from Egill Skallagrímsson and the microbrewery Kaldi came in 4-5 place. But almost none of the Christmas Kaldi came back: Agnes Anna Sigurðardóttir, the CEO of Kaldi told that only 700 of the 170,000 bottles of Christmas Kaldi were being returned this year.

With the Christmas beer removed from the shelves of ÁTVR beer lovers can start to look forward to the Þorra-beers: Their sale begin yesterday, January 21. 

Read more: The Þorra-beers will soon hit the shelves, including a 14,5% imperial stout from Borg microbrewery

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