Brewpubs were up nearly 15 percent in 2016, and this strong performance is welcome news since the segment is at the very heart of the craft beer industry.
Microbreweries are now the primary engine in craft growth. Seventy-eight percent of craft beer growth in 2016 came from breweries that sold fewer than 15,000 barrels.
Craft beer volume grew 6 percent last year, but those gains weren’t spread around evenly. Fifteen of the top 25 craft breweries saw their volumes drop over 2015.
The rise in craft beer has, for the most part, masked the slow deterioration of what is still the largest segment of the U.S. beer business.
It’s no wonder that many brewers seem to have whiplash, trying to keep track of all the changes, both internal and external, impacting the craft community.
Brewpubs have the wind at their backs. In 2017, 264 brewpubs opened, 64 closed, and the total in operation surpassed 2,000 for the second straight year.
Microbreweries are once again the primary engine in craft growth, accounting for nearly 60 percent of the category’s total growth in 2017.
How do you react when your backyard is becoming ever more crowded and competitive, and you’re in danger of getting elbowed off your own turf? You adapt.
Imports, craft beer, flavored malt beverages, and Michelob ULTRA are driving 100 percent of the growth in an overall flat U.S. beer industry.
Can brand champions be encouraged to drink their favorite brand even more often? Or will more grown be generated by reaching out directly to potential new drinkers?