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Craft Brew News

Beer Marketer's INSIGHTS brings you a new e-letter to cover the hottest segment in the beer biz, craft, in-depth, as it deserves:


As a subscriber, you get breaking news and much more: numbers, insights, analysis, people, events and perspectives that only BMI can provide. All brought to you in a lively, easy-to-read style. Craft Brew News brings you the knowledge you need to compete effectively in this dynamic segment.

You get accurate, reliable and relevant info to help you make key business decisions: Competitive trends, coverage of key events, interviews with key players, profiles, media coverage and much more. Craft Brew News also includes out-of-the-box features and items only found in the singular world of craft beer, from brand collaborations to unique events and promotions.

Craft Brew News is an e-letter published at least once a week, 60+ times a year, including flashes whenever need-to-know info breaks. CBN will also include occasional forays into the exciting world of specialty imports as well as big brewer efforts to compete in the craft arena. This publication synthesizes what you need to know about craft, helping you avoid information overload, while giving you data and insights you need to maximize your business opportunities.

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Craft segment keepin’ up growth pace to start new yr, as dollar sales up 20%, vol up 16% yr-to-date thru Jan 25 in IRI multi-channel + convenience data.  Segment’s up another 1.1 share of $$ to just over 8.  Most cos right where they left off too.  Boston Beer (including cider & tea), New Belgium, Sierra and Deschutes $$ sales each growin’ high-teens, like they’ve been the last handful of mos. Boston Beer and NBB trendin’ slower than 2014, whereas Sierra and Deschutes have picked up at end of 2014 and into 2015. On other hand, Sam Adams Boston Lager took tuff hit to start off yr, -10%, steeper than it’s been in memory. Gambrinus (+10%), Craft Brew Alliance (+5%), Lagunitas (+59%) round out top 5.  Stone (+41%) and SweetWater (+50%) trends both picked up a bit, while Bell’s slowed to +13%.  Dogfish (+20%) and Duvel USA (+3%) trends stayed roughly the same.  Lagunitas IPA Passes Torpedo; SweetWater IPA Cracks Top-30; IPAs Over 1/4 of Craft Sales  Lagunitas IPA $$ sales up 60% plus again in Jan. That put $$ sales (not volume) ahead of Sierra’s Torpedo for first time, to become the #1 selling IPA and #6 craft brand…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2015
  • Volume 6
  • Issue # 11
Looks like all that big brewer, small brewer and political pressure on pricey proposed spent grains rules paid off.  FDA has deemed that making brewers comply with “additional redundant animal feed standards…would not make common sense, and we’re not going to do it,” sez FDA Deputy Commissioner for Foods and Veterinary Medicine, Michael R Taylor in released statement.   “We have no intention to discourage or disrupt it,” he added after praising the “recycling of human food by-products to animal feed,” and noting “potential for any animal safety hazard….is minimal.” Michael gave glimpse of scope of this issue.  “To add to the picture, spent brewer and distiller grains are only a subset of a much broader practice…one industry estimate is that 70 percent of human food by-product becomes food for animals.” Recall, 1st comment period for proposed rule to the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) ended just a few weeks ago, where FDA heard from many “trade groups and members of Congress, as well as individual breweries (and farmers) raising concern.”  Revision to the proposed rule will be posted later this summer, prompting a 2nd comment period before rule is finalized.  “We understand how the language we used in our proposed…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2014
  • Volume 5
  • Issue # 32
Craft $$ sales up 16.3% in Portland IRI foodstores yr-to-date thru 3/30 while total beer $$ up 6.8% overall.  Portland mkt off to a very healthy start in 2014. But with craft’s continued outsized growth in its most developed mkt, craft jumped 3.8 share of $$ to 45.8.  Craft now bigger than Anheuser Busch and MillerCoors combined. They are down to 40.6 share of $$ in Portland foodstores. Down another 2.1 share, even tho their $$ sales up 1.5% each here.  MC at 23.7 share of $$ in IRI foodstores, off 1.2, and ABI down to 16.9, lost 0.9 share.   Portland mkt is currently tough for all larger suppliers, including craft. Each of top 6 suppliers in city lost share of $$ (in descending order: AB, MC, CBA, Deschutes, Crown and Pabst) and lost 3.9 share collectively.  Craft Brew Alliance off to rough start. Its $$ sales down 13% and it lost 1.4 share of $$ to 6.2.  Deschutes $$ sales up just 0.7% and it lost 0.4 share to 6.1.  Who’s comin’ on? Boston Beer doubled again.  Up 99.8% and gained 1.6 share of $$ to 3.5.  But that’s likely mostly Angry Orchard. Cider mkt in Portland is…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2014
  • Volume 5
  • Issue # 31
The Oct 2 letter from 5 US Senators to US Atty Gen Holder warning against proposed AB InBev purchase of Modelo, and Reuters' recent follow-up article, make some pretty stark claims about the pending purchase. Deal would "extend [ABI's] market share leadership" in US, give ABI "increased leverage to reduce competition" by "enhancing ABI's ability to either acquire more" wholesalers or "pressure" independent distribs to sever relations with "rival brands," i.e. craft, the letter charges. Ultimately, consumers would face less choice and higher prices, the Senators also suggest. Their concern "motivated" by ABI execs' statements about distrib loyalty in recent yrs. Letter points to comments from a yr ago at AB distrib mtg where AB execs stressed distribs should focus on ABI brands and laid out notion of "anchor wholesalers." Senators describe anchors as "partners that have agreed to limit or cease distribution of rival brands." Letter also quotes ABI ceo Brito from 2d qtr conference call this yr saying ABI expects distribs to devote "most of if not all of their share of mind" to AB brands. ABI's attempts to prevent distribs from "associating freely" with competing brewers "strikes at the heart of competition" in US beer, they advise.…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2012
  • Volume 3
  • Issue # 58
Boston Beer founder Jim Koch and Magic Hat founder Alan Newman are joining forces. In deal just signed last week, Alchemy and Science (Alan's co) will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Boston Beer, headquartered in Burlington, Vt. Two of craft's most savvy, veteran marketers and creative thinkers are going to partner in a wide open new venture. Alchemy and Science will be a "craft beer incubator," said Alan, with "financial backing" of Boston Beer, and it will "share in the upside." Deal is "essentially a white sheet of paper," Alan added, and "we are free to pursue it any way we want to pursue it," as long as the beers "are world class." That could mean anything from creation of new brands to mergers and acquisitions or "even importing," acknowledged Jim. They have a "list of opportunities," said Alan, and a "broad range" of ideas and don't know yet "which will come to fruition." "A lot of cool things will happen in craft over the next 10 years," said Jim. But right now, "I've got my hands full" with Boston's multiple initiatives (see below). "There's more out there. I can't do it. Alan can." Deal was founded on "personal…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2011
  • Volume 2
  • Issue # 51
Just in last week, ex-ceo of Walmart told NBWA it would be expanding craft, Total Wine and More ceo David Trone said craft "on fire" in his stores and Buffalo Wild Wings posted record results in qtr after it expanded craft offerings. Not bad. That's just the world's largest retailer, the largest alc-bev only retailer and the hottest casual dining chain. Collectively, their comments suggest far more of a beginning than an ending, that's for sure. "Wal Mart gets crafty with bigger beer selection," headlined Ad age, calling it another sign that "fast growing segment is going mainstream." Speaking at NBWA convention, ex-Walmart ceo Lee Scott (who still serves on board) said "we've got to make more space, we have to have more representation on assortment," i.e. more craft beer. "You can't take an area where people are moving to craft and 'under-assort yourself because the person who is buying craft beer and wants that assortment will drive to Kroger and pay the 15% more," Lee said. Fast growing retailer Total Wine and More will crash thru $1 bil sales barrier this yr. A typical TWM store carries 2500 beer SKUs. And its craft beer sales are up 40%, said…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2011
  • Volume 2
  • Issue # 50
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