Japanese beer demand fizzling

Demand for beer in Japan is in such a decline that all three of the nation's top brewers are forecasting decreased profits.

This week Asahi, Kirin and Sapporo each forecast reductions in the 3% range, blaming a declining population and a consumer shift to other beverages.

Also, a major push by beermakers to launch new products to reverse the decline may have backfired.

"There were as many as 20 or so new products introduced in the beer market, and that may have confused some consumers," Kazuyasu Kato, Kirin president and CEO, told a news conference.

Perhaps some of the problems lie in the marketing. Here's one example of a TV commercial that wouldn't entice me to buy the beer.

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