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(The Local)   German brewers face hundreds of millions of euros in fines. The charge? Colluding for at least 20 years with typical German discipline to regularly raise price of beer, independent of free market competition   (thelocal.de) divider line 59
    More: Asinine, Germans, face hundreds, German law, North Rhine-Westphalia, euros, brewery, disciplines, Air Berlin  
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2969 clicks; posted to Main » on 22 Aug 2013 at 7:26 AM (48 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-08-22 01:40:32 AM
No one who speaks German could possibly be an evil man!
 
2013-08-22 03:26:37 AM
So, for doing what companies normally do? Whatta bunch of Deutschbags.
 
2013-08-22 06:04:38 AM
This is probably the worst thing Germany's ever done.
 
2013-08-22 07:28:19 AM
It's like a putsch or something!
 
2013-08-22 07:29:22 AM
I write about beer professionally, and it's pretty clear that this isn't just happening in Germany. In Ontario, at least, it has the good grace to hide behind government mandates for minimum pricing on discount brands.
 
2013-08-22 07:30:01 AM
Yah, that never happens in the US.

*eyeroll*
 
2013-08-22 07:32:16 AM
The government will get the cut they feel they've been cheated out of and beer prices will have to rise to pay for the enormous fines.
 
2013-08-22 07:34:24 AM
FTA:
This information would then be passed onto smaller brewers who would then too have to raise prices in order to keep up with the competition

I don't recall this from my economics class, maybe I slept through it.  Why would the smaller brewers have to raise their prices to keep up with the competition?  Why couldn't they just leave their prices lower and thus attract more business than the bigger brewers?
 
2013-08-22 07:36:30 AM
While they were busy doing that, american beer quality passed them. The invisible hand of the free market is gonna bite them when cheaper, much higher quality american beer competes against their overpriced water.

/ not talking about bud or miller or coors
 
2013-08-22 07:37:29 AM
And yet in German restaurants Beer is still cheaper by volume than bottled water.  Maybe they are colluding on that too!
 
2013-08-22 07:39:19 AM

Pheonixfyre: FTA:
This information would then be passed onto smaller brewers who would then too have to raise prices in order to keep up with the competition

I don't recall this from my economics class, maybe I slept through it.  Why would the smaller brewers have to raise their prices to keep up with the competition?  Why couldn't they just leave their prices lower and thus attract more business than the bigger brewers?


Europeans still dont understand economics.
 
2013-08-22 07:39:48 AM
They're history's greatest monsters!
 
2013-08-22 07:40:08 AM

SlothB77: While they were busy doing that, american beer quality passed them. The invisible hand of the free market is gonna bite them when cheaper, much higher quality american beer competes against their overpriced water.

/ not talking about bud or miller or coors


Just as I would expect from the man who considers Ayn Rand FUN.

 
2013-08-22 07:43:07 AM

SlothB77: Pheonixfyre: FTA:
This information would then be passed onto smaller brewers who would then too have to raise prices in order to keep up with the competition

I don't recall this from my economics class, maybe I slept through it.  Why would the smaller brewers have to raise their prices to keep up with the competition?  Why couldn't they just leave their prices lower and thus attract more business than the bigger brewers?

Europeans still dont understand economics.

 
2013-08-22 07:43:35 AM
What is this "Free market competition" of which you speak? Sounds like Fascist/Socialist commie-talk to me.
 
2013-08-22 07:43:46 AM

Raharu: SlothB77: While they were busy doing that, american beer quality passed them. The invisible hand of the free market is gonna bite them when cheaper, much higher quality american beer competes against their overpriced water.

/ not talking about bud or miller or coors

Just as I would expect from the man who considers Ayn Rand FUN.


There are plenty of American brewers that could compete in Germany right now. Most, however, aren't made in sufficient quantity.
 
2013-08-22 07:44:44 AM

Pheonixfyre: FTA:
This information would then be passed onto smaller brewers who would then too have to raise prices in order to keep up with the competition

I don't recall this from my economics class, maybe I slept through it.  Why would the smaller brewers have to raise their prices to keep up with the competition?  Why couldn't they just leave their prices lower and thus attract more business than the bigger brewers?


Yeah....

Maybe the big players have other levers they can pull or something. fark with the little guys hops supplier? Further collude with distributors to keep the cheaper products off the shelf? Hard to say.
 
2013-08-22 07:45:29 AM

ChubbyTiger: Raharu: SlothB77: While they were busy doing that, american beer quality passed them. The invisible hand of the free market is gonna bite them when cheaper, much higher quality american beer competes against their overpriced water.

/ not talking about bud or miller or coors

Just as I would expect from the man who considers Ayn Rand FUN.

There are plenty of American brewers that could compete in Germany right now. Most, however, aren't made in sufficient quantity.


Don't they need to adhere to their purity law to sell there?
 
2013-08-22 07:46:22 AM

ChubbyTiger: Raharu: SlothB77: While they were busy doing that, american beer quality passed them. The invisible hand of the free market is gonna bite them when cheaper, much higher quality american beer competes against their overpriced water.

/ not talking about bud or miller or coors

Just as I would expect from the man who considers Ayn Rand FUN.

There are plenty of American brewers that could compete in Germany right now. Most, however, aren't made in sufficient quantity.



This is true. I was talking more about slothys Undying worship of Ayn Rand and the invisible hand.
 
2013-08-22 07:49:14 AM

HotWingConspiracy: ChubbyTiger: Raharu: SlothB77: While they were busy doing that, american beer quality passed them. The invisible hand of the free market is gonna bite them when cheaper, much higher quality american beer competes against their overpriced water.

/ not talking about bud or miller or coors

Just as I would expect from the man who considers Ayn Rand FUN.

There are plenty of American brewers that could compete in Germany right now. Most, however, aren't made in sufficient quantity.

Don't they need to adhere to their purity law to sell there?


Don't you get a ring or something for doing that?
 
2013-08-22 07:49:20 AM
Farking beer nazis. I hate beer nazis.

/bringe mir vier gebratene Hühner und eine Cola
 
2013-08-22 07:52:12 AM
Just some stupid conspiracy theory. Nobody would ever work together like this over beer profits, or oilfields.
 
2013-08-22 07:53:16 AM
But but but reinheitsgebot!!!!
 
2013-08-22 07:54:52 AM
Germans take their beer seriously.  They have laws about what is & isn't allowed in a product for it to be considered legit beer (well probably Lager more than 'beer'); you break em and they will slap you stupid.   You think Brits are bad when separated from their pint o' pale?  You ain't seen nothing until you've seen a German throwing a hissy fit that his pint isn't perfect.
 
2013-08-22 07:56:17 AM

Hobbess: And yet in German restaurants Beer is still cheaper by volume than bottled water.  Maybe they are colluding on that too!


Nope. We have a law here in .de that in restaurants at least one beverage has to be cheaper than the cheapest alcoholic beverage. In 99.9% that's bottled water. Many pub owners just don't care ... same price for e.g. 0.2 l water and 0.2 l beer.
 
2013-08-22 07:58:19 AM
HotWingConspiracy: Don't they need to adhere to their purity law to sell there?

Pretty much yes or it can't be labeled as Beer/Lager/etc.  It can be sold as an "alcoholic beer flavoured beverage" though, just not Lager/Beer/Ale/etc.
 
2013-08-22 08:03:10 AM

wintergreen744: I know this can't be true, because laissez-faire ideologues have assured me that collusion between sellers to impede competition isn't possible. There's always too much incentive for one seller to cheat to gain market share, so it never happens.

Who cares what happens in practice? In theory, seller collusion just can't work.


So... Vote democrat?
 
2013-08-22 08:07:53 AM
Big deal.  A suitcase full of monopoly money.
 
2013-08-22 08:18:21 AM
I don't give a crap about monopolies and crap.  show the damn beer server girls with their breasts spilling out already.
 
2013-08-22 08:19:12 AM

Pheonixfyre: I don't recall this from my economics class, maybe I slept through it.  Why would the smaller brewers have to raise their prices to keep up with the competition?  Why couldn't they just leave their prices lower and thus attract more business than the bigger brewers?


Maybe the larger brewers who have a bigger market share would for at time take in more profit and use those profits to expand their distribution network and push out the smaller brewers?

If RC cola decided to price itself $.50 cheaper per 12-pk than coke, people wouldn't instantly switch.

my big beef is with the short-pours at Oktoberfest.  Has that been settled yet?
 
2013-08-22 08:24:35 AM
YES! Pay the regulators fines in order to unbalance your balance sheet and thereby justify passing that cost on to the consumers.  But whatever you do, don't just lower the price of beer!!
 
2013-08-22 08:25:23 AM

Saints_Gambit: I write about beer professionally, and it's pretty clear that this isn't just happening in Germany. In Ontario, at least, it has the good grace to hide behind government mandates for minimum pricing on discount brands.


Yeah. Well big deal. I drink beer.
A lot of beer.

I'm drinking beer right now.

Are you?

Now stand back and watch this.
 
2013-08-22 08:42:09 AM
Instead of fining them, how about forcing them to hand out free beer for the next year?
 
2013-08-22 08:43:23 AM

HotWingConspiracy: ChubbyTiger: Raharu: SlothB77: While they were busy doing that, american beer quality passed them. The invisible hand of the free market is gonna bite them when cheaper, much higher quality american beer competes against their overpriced water.

/ not talking about bud or miller or coors

Just as I would expect from the man who considers Ayn Rand FUN.

There are plenty of American brewers that could compete in Germany right now. Most, however, aren't made in sufficient quantity.

Don't they need to adhere to their purity law to sell there?


You know who else had laws about what was or wasn't considered pure in Germany?
 
2013-08-22 09:10:31 AM
Ve are not a price vorlike people.
 
2013-08-22 09:11:53 AM
You guys suck at beer threads.
 
2013-08-22 09:18:05 AM

Vaneshi: Germans take their beer seriously.  They have laws about what is & isn't allowed in a product for it to be considered legit beer (well probably Lager more than 'beer'); you break em and they will slap you stupid.   You think Brits are bad when separated from their pint o' pale?  You ain't seen nothing until you've seen a German throwing a hissy fit that his pint isn't perfect.


I remember German bartenders pouring out beer that was poured perfectly. What a waste! Last time I went over I took a mixed twelver from a local brewery to share with the Germs I was working with. They went apeshiat over the oatmeal and vanilla porters I took.
 
2013-08-22 09:36:44 AM
Dammmmmmit anyway. How dare they do this. I can get Öttinger beer at the beverage shop for 35 cents. Wonder what it cost before the gouging commenced?
Most beers do run in the price of 75 cents to one euro out of the shops. In a restaurtant the same amt of beer will cost you 3.20 euros. (Half liter)
 
2013-08-22 10:25:18 AM
www.biersekte.de
 
2013-08-22 10:27:27 AM

wardlyone: Vaneshi: Germans take their beer seriously.  They have laws about what is & isn't allowed in a product for it to be considered legit beer (well probably Lager more than 'beer'); you break em and they will slap you stupid.   You think Brits are bad when separated from their pint o' pale?  You ain't seen nothing until you've seen a German throwing a hissy fit that his pint isn't perfect.

I remember German bartenders pouring out beer that was poured perfectly. What a waste! Last time I went over I took a mixed twelver from a local brewery to share with the Germs I was working with. They went apeshiat over the oatmeal and vanilla porters I took.


If this article is correct, then I'm not surprised about them going nuts for the beers you imported.  Apparently the combination of the tradition of the Reinheitsgebot and the Vorläufiges Deutsches Biergesetz (Provisional Beer Laws, the current German law governing what beer can be made with) have stifled the creativity of German brewers. The Reinheitsgebot is no longer law because the E.U. ruled it to be an impermissible barrier to trade in 1987, but many German brewers still adhere to it voluntarily.  The Provisional Beer Laws were passed in 1993 as an E.U. compliant replacement for the  Reinheitsgebot.  They allow more ingredients to be used, but it's still pretty restrictive.
 
2013-08-22 10:50:22 AM

Pheonixfyre: FTA:
This information would then be passed onto smaller brewers who would then too have to raise prices in order to keep up with the competition

I don't recall this from my economics class, maybe I slept through it.  Why would the smaller brewers have to raise their prices to keep up with the competition?  Why couldn't they just leave their prices lower and thus attract more business than the bigger brewers?


Maybe this has to do with the percentage of the price hike the supermarket earns. They might not have a huge incentive to sell the cheapest beers if their profit is to small.

Otherwise I don't know.
 
2013-08-22 11:28:32 AM
I can't believe people were forced to pay more money.  I guess the brewers were at the stores with weapons or holding their families to make them buy it.
 
2013-08-22 11:31:30 AM
Not related

cdn2-www.craveonline.com
 
2013-08-22 11:35:31 AM

MugzyBrown: I can't believe people were forced to pay more money.  I guess the brewers were at the stores with weapons or holding their families to make them buy it.


Yeah go with that.
 
2013-08-22 11:40:22 AM

HotWingConspiracy: MugzyBrown: I can't believe people were forced to pay more money.  I guess the brewers were at the stores with weapons or holding their families to make them buy it.

Yeah go with that.


Was there something stopping another company from undercutting the market and these artificial prices?
 
2013-08-22 11:54:37 AM
outfitnm.com
 
2013-08-22 11:58:11 AM

SlothB77: While they were busy doing that, american beer quality passed them. The invisible hand of the free market is gonna bite them when cheaper, much higher quality american beer competes against their overpriced water.

/ not talking about bud or miller or coors


In a word..... no.  American craft beers are stupid expensive.  German premium pils go for c.a. EUR 13 a crate.  Wheat beers same price.  US craft beers are usually sold in six packs at $8-10 a pop.  That's way more expensive.  Also, German brewers supply what German palates want.  Yes it's mostly a mono-culture with little experimentation.  But the quality is highly consistent. Germans won't go for the American arms race in hoppiness either.

Keep in mind, the Germans don't even like Belgian beer.  They sure as heck won't go for ultra hoppy IPAs.
 
2013-08-22 12:26:57 PM

HotWingConspiracy: ChubbyTiger: Raharu: SlothB77: While they were busy doing that, american beer quality passed them. The invisible hand of the free market is gonna bite them when cheaper, much higher quality american beer competes against their overpriced water.

/ not talking about bud or miller or coors

Just as I would expect from the man who considers Ayn Rand FUN.

There are plenty of American brewers that could compete in Germany right now. Most, however, aren't made in sufficient quantity.

Don't they need to adhere to their purity law to sell there?


The purity law no longer exists, its successor does limit what can be called beer if it is made in germany, but imported beer does not have to follow the rules.  You can buy American Budweiser (renamed Anheuser-Busch B because Czech Budweiser has the name there) there and MGD is for sale all over the place.

Ebbelwoi: German brewers supply what German palates want.


Yes, boring beer for an exceedingly boring cultural palate.  Imagine my dismay when I moved to Hamburg and realized that I would pretty much be drinking becks for the next 5 years (or, ugh, Astra).
 
2013-08-22 12:28:35 PM

Carn: Big deal.  A suitcase full of monopoly money.


No it won't, it's in €'s and not US$
 
2013-08-22 01:03:49 PM
If the claims are true, those involved could face huge fines.


That's the last sentence of that pointless article. The entire article is pure speculation. That's not "news" - that's an op/ed piece hoping to manufacture "controversy."
 
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