Friday, March 16, 2012

Craft beer sales nearing $1 billion in U.S.

A fascinating story over at breaks down the crazy growth of the craft beer industry in the United States. Off the top, craft beer will likely hit $1 billion in annual sales soon.

And while that's amazing news, it probably doesn't come to a shock to those of us in Bend, as craft breweries continue to pop up and do well, with seemingly no end in sight.

Cut+paste from the story:
Craft’s dollar share in U.S. Supermarkets was up 15 percent over last year to 10.8 share, the sixth consecutive year of growth. That’s double the share it held in 2006. These numbers prove why craft beer is the number one growing beverage-alcohol segment in U.S. Supermarkets
So what products are responsible for the growth? Wandel pointed to several areas. Variety and seasonal packages, IPA’s, large-format bottle offerings, the rise of canned beer and even private label brands (see below) are the major catalysts.
No mention of Deschutes Brewery in the story, but it does note that Boston Brewing (they do Sam Adams) is still the leader in craft beer sales, ahead of Sierra Nevada and Craft Brew Alliance.

So, it appears the craft beer revolution has some staying power nationally. The question in Bend is if the bubble will ever burst locally for some of the smaller/newer brewers, and is there a tipping point at which we can't support anymore breweries? Or will we just keep drinking more and more, no matter how many breweries there are?

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