Kings of Mead in cooperation with EMMA (European Mead Makers Association) has recently surveyed European meaderies. It was first attempt to gather an information about mead production in Europe. In future we’re planing to perform similar surveys each year to gather data.
Our survey was only available for commercial meaderies which are selling their mead to consumers.
From the data gathered we can conclude that year on year there is about 10% raise in new meaderies being open.
In Europe most popular type of mead produced is traditional mead (around 36% of production), and it is 88% of meaderies which have this type of mead in their offer. The least popular is session mead (mead with lower alcohol content), only 11%. If you however take into consideration braggots (fusion of mead and beer) at 12% production level, European production of lower alcohol content meads raise to 23%.
To summarize, most popular in Europe are mentioned before traditional meads, followed by mellomels (mead with fruit additions), then metheglins (mead with spices and herbs), braggots and finally session meads.
Most of European mead makers have in their offer higher number of types of mead. If they, however got only 2 or less meads than most likely they will produce other type of alcohol beverages. 56% of surveyed mead makers have their business profile based solely on mead production.
Over half (53%) of European mead makers are also bee keepers. Only 23% of production though is based solely on their own honey (tutaj zobacz sobie jak bylo po polsku napisane; wydaje mi sie ze nie bylo to zbyt jasno i troszke inaczej przetlumaczylem. Wydaje mi sie ze powinno byc iz tylko 23% miodosytnikow uzywa WYLACZNIE wlasnego miodu do produkcji). But if you take into consideration that most of the honey is locally sourced, mead production based on either own or locally sourced honey is at 60% level. It’s also very encouraging that only 10% of honey used in mead production comes from outside of EU.
The most popular type of honey used in production is multi flower honey (27%) and it’s being used by 81% of meaderies. What’s interesting, European mead makers are also reaching for less standard types of honey. „Other” is 27% of honey used and is being used by 47% of meaderies. The least popular honey is manuka honey, which is no a surprise considering it’s high price.
Annual production in meaderies varies. We’ve made a mistake when designing this survey and we did not asked of country of origin of each meadery. It will be fixed upon next edition of survey.
Most of the meaderies produce less than 200hl.
Over half of the mead makers are working alone and don’t hire anyone. The rest is hiring less than 5 people. Based on that we can conclude that most of the European meaderies is local, micro business.
There are few meaderies which production is high (over 1000hl), but it’s only 8,3% of all meaderies.
Most popular type of bottle used by meaderies are 0,75l. Right behind them are 0.5l botles. What’s interesting, 19% of bottles used are the one described as „other”. We will have to investigate it further to establish what type of bottles are they. Using cans as a mead packaging is not popular in Europe, and it’s only 2% of all.