The Changes in American Beer Tastes Over the Past Few Years

Americans are drinking a lot more Blue Moon, Pabst Blue Ribbon, and Yuengling. Michelob? Not so much.

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Americans have been drinking less and less beer for about two decades now—per capita consumption is down 20% since the early 1990s.

Beers leading that slump include Michelob. Three out of its four largest brands have fallen off significantly—the consumption by volume of Michelob light, Michelob Ultra Amber, and Michelob has tumbled by 51%, 43%, and 41%, respectively, since 2008, according to data from research firm Euromonitor. Miller Genuine Draft, Bass, and Amstel, have each been falling out of favor, too. As have staples like Budweiser and Heineken.

Craft beers are thriving overall—in 1976 there was only one craft brewery in the US and now there are nearly 2,000. A handful of craft beers, including Shock Top and Lagunitas, are growing pretty fast.

But there are also a number of bigger name brands that have been expanding rapidly. Americans are drinking a lot more Blue Moon, Pabst Blue Ribbon, and Yuengling; between 2008 and 2012, consumption grew by over 100%, just under 100%, and just over 90%, respectively. Stella Artois, Modelo, and Magic Hat are doing well also.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.