Beer

China's thirst for beer gives super boost to UK brewing market

 (iStock)

British brews are becoming insanely popular in China.

According to Beverage Daily, beer exports from the U.K. experience a 500 percent increase in 2016 due to rising consumer demand throughout the country.

Some analysts have cited Chinese president Xi Jinping's interest in beer as contributing to the beverage's rising popularity. In 2015, he was photographed enjoying a beer with former British prime minister David Cameron.

But China isn't the only country to have a stronger interest in British brews-- exports to India grew by 417 percent and exports to the EU grew by 5 percent.

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With a total of 1.05 billion pints of beer being sent abroad, the country's beer exports are now valued at $712 million, up $102 million since 2015.

Approximately 63 percent of Britain’s beer exports are for the EU while the remaining 37 percent are destined for other locations around the globe. 

The increase in brewery exports has boosted beer to the third most valuable food or drink export coming out of the U.K., falling behind only whisky and chocolate in 2016, according to the Food and Drink Federation 2016 export statistics.

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Top 11 UK exports, 2016, according to the Food and Drink Federation

1. Whisky $4,983,611,523

2. Chocolate $807,298,094

3. Beer $724,548,214

4. Salmon $704,834,272

5. Cheese $607,266,554

6. Wine $596,338,977

7. Gin $578,265,000

8. Beef $542,675,906

9. Soft drinks $520,647,573

10. Wheat $473,734,240

11. Breakfast cereals $469,429,440

Beverage Daily reports that the strong export growth in 2016 was supported by both the industry and government to promote the U.K. food and drink abroad.