Brewing giant Heineken said it sold more beer than expected when European bars reopened, meaning it will maintain its guidance despite volatility from war in Ukraine.
Beer sales rose to a greater extent than anticipated in the first quarter, the Dutch business said.
Volumes rose 5.2 per cent on a like-for-like basis compared to the comparable period last year, surpassing Heineken’s own average forecast of 3.5 per cent.
Over the first quarter, the brewer’s European arm saw a 11.5 per cent boost to beer volumes, as countries eased winter Covid restrictions.
However, the brewer warned it was eyeing the looming impact of “mounting inflationary pressures” on disposable income.
Heineken said there was a “consequent risk to beer consumption later in the year”, as households struggle with rising energy, grocery and fuel bills.
A guidance of “stable to modest” improvement to its operating profit margin was maintained, although the firm acknowledged Russia’s invasion of Ukraine posed additional uncertainty.