Kirin announced a new entry in the "Dai-3-Beer" (3rd beer) category called Kirin Smooth (which will go on sale in early September). Kirin claims it is smooth, light, creamy and will lower in alcohol than other brands (4%). Kirin already makes the best selling "beer" in this category, Nodogoshi.
Beer companies have been trying to counter high taxes for many years, now the high prices of ingredients is making this even more important for beer companies and consumers.
Kirin also announced a new winter season Happoshu (low malt beer) which is lighter tasting for the cold season (actually, I would prefer a richer taste for the cold season, but what do I know). This will go on sale in October.
They also announced a new limited edition beer which uses special hops from Iwate Prefecture and will go on sale in November.
To give you an idea of the prices in the 3 beer categories, the suggested prices will be as follows per 350 ml can:
beer 217 yen
happoshu 161 yen
dai-3 beer 141 yen