Beer from Trebjesa brewery is by far most popular and most consumed beer in Montenegro. Besides domestic market and that of Serbia, Nikšićko beer and other variants have significant popularity in Croatia, Slovenia, Albania and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Some quantities of beer are exported to France, Germany, Switzerland, Canada and England.
Brewing industry in Montenegro traces its roots to 1896, when Vuko Krivokapić built Onogošt brewery in Nikšić. The construction of the brewery in the newly established Principality of Montenegro was endorsed and supported by Prince Nicholas.
In 1908, a number of entrepreneurs from Nikšić decided to build another brewery, named Trebjesa. The first beer came out of the brewery in 1911. The factory was burned during the First World War, and converted to a prison by occupying Austria-Hungary. After the war, the reconstruction was slow, and brewery resumed operations in 1931. However, development was once again short lived, as World War II once again brought destruction. After the liberation from the Axis powers, brewery was nationalized, thoroughly reconstructed and expanded from 1946 to 1956, and quickly became one of the most recognizable Montenegrin brands.
The regional crisis during Yugoslav wars in the 1990s did affect the company, but it recovered relatively soon after the region stabilized, as inherent quality and regional brand awareness helped it to rebound quickly.
In mid October 2009, private equity fund CVC Capital Partners bought all of Anheuser–Busch InBev's holdings in Central Europe for €2.23 billion. They renamed the operations StarBev. In 2012, StarBev was acquired by Molson Coors. During the entire period in private ownership, the brewery expanded its operations to import and bottling various international brands, in addition to producing its signature Nikšićko brand. The company covers more than 90% of Montenegrin beer market, and is increasingly successful in regional market.
The company produces four lagers under the brand name "Nik": Nikšićko pivo, Nik Gold, Nik Cool, and Nikšićko tamno.
Beer in Montenegro
Beer for home consumption is mostly sold in 330 ml glass bottles, 250 ml or 500 ml cans. As of 2004, beer is very often sold in plastic Q-pack bottles of 1, 1.5 and 2 litres. This beer is cheaper though equal in quality. Half-litre glass bottles (popularly "mason's beer" – zidarsko pivo) are now much rarer.
Light beer dominates in Montenegro. Due to significantly lower consumption, dark beer is not as commonly present.
Beer in glass bottles costs around 0.5 euros per litre while in plastic it could go as low as 0.4 euros per litre. Beer in pubs costs around 1.7 euros per 0.33L bottle, and around 1.5 euros for 500 ml draught variant. In addition to domestic brand, majority of bars serve the usual foreign fare of Heineken, Bavaria, Carlsberg, Tuborg, etc.
- "EastAgri - Agribusiness Companies". www.eastagri.org. Retrieved 2009-07-08.
- "Trebjesa (InBev)". ratebeer.com. Retrieved 2009-07-08.