Molson Coors has signed a deal with Chinese brewing giant China Resources Snow to bring its flagship Snow lager - the bestselling beer in China - to the UK and Ireland next year.

The Carling owner will launch the 5% abv beer in 330ml cans on 15 January, with an eye to building a presence in retail and the Asian restaurant sector, alongside the likes of Cobra and Singha.

The beer will continue to be brewed in China, with Molson Coors importing it “to ensure consumers enjoy the exact same premium beer” as Chinese shoppers, said Molson Coors. Rsp is yet to be confirmed.

To mark its UK debut, Snow has been given a refresh. New labelling features traditional Chinese characters and imagery, and would “make a strong visual impact on shelves” Molson Coors said.

The launch comes as sales of world beers are trumping those of traditional lagers, with the likes of Peroni (up 10.3% year on year to £132m) and San Miguel (up 9.5% to £106m) - though Molson Coors-owned Cobra has dipped slightly, falling 0.4% to £35m [Nielsen 52 w/e 9 September 2017].

Drinkers were more knowledgeable and were “demanding greater choice to allow them to explore a range of flavours” said Molson Coors UK & Ireland MD Phil Whitehead. “We believe this is a reflection of the general societal shift towards spending on experiences and, in part, the continued food revolution that has been taking place in the UK over the past 10 to 15 years.”