Support The Moscow Times!

Brewers to Stop Selling Beer in Large PET Bottles

That typical crowd of late-night drinkers passing around one immense plastic bottle of beer — a familiar sight to any long-term resident of Russia — may soon be a thing of the past, as the Union of Russian Brewers prepares to decrease the size of plastic beer bottles.

Having agreed with a government proposal, from Jan. 1, 2014, brewers will discontinue sales of beer in polyethylene terephthalate, or PET, containers with a volume of more than 2.5 liters. Beverages with an alcohol content higher than 6 percent will only be sold in volumes of up to 2 liters, Kommersant reported Thursday.

According to experts, half of all beer produced in Russia is sold in PET packaging. A full ban on use of PET bottles could cause a 12 billion ruble ($370 million) loss to brewers, the Union of Russian Brewers estimated.

Beer sold in PET bottles of more than 2.5 liters and more than 2 liters amounts to about 2 percent and 4 to 5 percent of the beer market, respectively, union chaiman Isaac Sheps said at a press conference Wednesday.

Sheps noted previously that a full prohibition on PET packaging could shrink the already dwindling beer market by a crippling 18 percent.

Read more

Independent journalism isn’t dead. You can help keep it alive.

The Moscow Times’ team of journalists has been first with the big stories on the coronavirus crisis in Russia since day one. Our exclusives and on-the-ground reporting are being read and shared by many high-profile journalists.

We wouldn’t be able to produce this crucial journalism without the support of our loyal readers. Please consider making a donation to The Moscow Times to help us continue covering this historic time in the world’s largest country.