Beer Purchasers' Index | NBWA: America's Beer Distributors

Beer Purchasers' IndexThe NBWA Beer Purchasers’ Index (BPI) is an informal monthly statistical release giving distributors a timely and reliable indicator of industry beer purchasing activity.
Similar to the widely recognized Purchasing Managers’ Index, the BPI is a net rising index and a leading indicator of industry performance based on surveyed responses from participating beer purchasers. 

May Beer Purchasers' Index.

The total beer index rose to 61.9 in May 2019 from 58.7 in May 2018, marking the fifth month in 2019 above 50. These figures indicate expanding beer orders to suppliers. Compared to all May readings over the past five years, as pictured below, the May 2019 Index was higher than in 2016, 2017 and 2018, although it still fell below the 2015 index. The “At Risk Inventory” index reading at 52.5 is slightly lower than the prior year's reading of 55.1, but continues to increase slightly as inventories build heading into summer selling seasons.


Looking across the segments: ​

  • The index for imports took a significant step back in May with an index of 58.7 compared to the May 2017 reading of 71.3. The segment is taking on a similar trend to craft by finding a new equilibrium point just slightly lower, but still expanding.  
  • The craft index at 54.8 is about even with last year’s reading of 55.1. This index indicates a continued expansion in volumes in 2019.
  • Premium lights posted slightly higher readings for May 2019 at 44, but are still well below the expansion territory. Premium regulars and below premiums both saw declines in index readings relative to last year. All three segments continue to struggle with below 50 index readings.
  • The flavored malt beverage/progressive adult beverage (FMB/PAB) segment continues to break the upper boundaries with an index of 78.8, which is significantly above the 55.3 reading from May 2018. The May reading marks another record-breaking index for the category.
  • The cider segment took another breather from expansion territory with a May 2019 reading of 45.2. This is above the 41.5 index from May 2018.

The June 2019 BPI survey will run from June 6 through June 14. Results will be released to participating distributors on June 17.

NOTE: NBWA member distributors, if you would like to see early results, please register and participate in this month’s survey by filling out the form below.


Beer Distributors: Please sign up to participate and receive the first and only advance notice of expectations for increasing or decreasing sales. Complete the form below using your company’s primary beer purchaser’s contact information. For additional information, please email
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