Best Selling Beers 1990 – 2020

I’m always quite interested in what people drink and the most popular beers. Gotta say, some people tend to drink a lot of garbage haha. I did a bit of research into the best selling beers in Australia over the past couple decades. Here’s what I found.

From 1990 through to 2020, the best selling Australian beer and beer brands were generally lagers from major breweries. In 1990, Tooheys Extra Dry was the most popular beer brand with approximately 280 million litres sold in Australia that year. This was followed by Carlton Draught (150 million litres) and Victoria Bitter (127 million litres).

In the early 2000s, Foster’s Lager was the most popular beer brand in Australia, selling around 257 million litres in 2001 and 245 million litres in 2002.

In 2003, this was overtaken by Victoria Bitter (which sold around 263 million litres) and both brands maintained a lead until 2007 when VB’s sales dropped to 188 million litres, making Carlton Dry the top seller with approximately 220 million litres.

Since 2008, XXXX Gold has been the best-selling Australian beer brand for 11 consecutive years. In 2009 it sold approximately 247 million litres and increased steadily over the next decade, reaching a peak of 309 million litres in 2018. This is followed by VB on 125 million litres and Tooheys New on 115 million litres.

Overall, the total amount of beer sold in Australia has decreased since 2007, with an estimated 2.7 billion litres in 2020, down from 3.1 billion litres in 2007. Despite this trend, XXXX Gold remains a popular choice for Australians and is projected to remain the top selling Australian beer brand through 2021.

The data shows that Australians are increasingly opting for light beers, with an estimated 1.2 billion litres of low-carbohydrate and mid-strength beer being sold in 2020.

This accounts for 44% of total beer sales – up from just 38% in 2007.

With brands such as Hahn Super Dry, Tooheys Extra Dry Light and Victoria Bitter Ultra competing for attention, we can expect to see further changes in the top selling Australian beer brands over the next decade.