Craft Beer & Brewing – A Crafty Introduction
Welcome all to the Brewegian! If you love beer and brewing, have a similar love for coffee and generally enjoy all topics about brewing then you’re in the right place. We will be covering every possible subject in the brewing world. The subjects covered by us will be varied and will encompass many subjects in an around the brewing industry or should I say industries. We will cover everything from beer and brewing to the breweries that make these fine products. We will also delve deep into the wonderful world of coffee as well! I’m so glad you are here!
Beer by the Numbers – A Brief Overview
As I sit in my warm office in St. Paul, Minnesota preparing to write the introduction to the brewegian I fear a craft brewery might be growing under my chair! The world of craft beer and brewing has exploded! But not just here in Minnesota, not even just here in the U.S. This love for craft beers seems to have become a global phenomenon as well and I certainly do not see an end in sight! Craft Breweries are growing like weeds here in my home state of Minnesota. There are currently 150 and counting! I seriously can’t keep up with all the new breweries that are opening and I’m in the industry!
The number of new craft brewery openings in other states are not that much different from here in Minnesota. The BA did a craft beer industry analysis and reported that currently 5,562 breweries are operating in the United States as of June 30, 2017. That’s a growth of 906 breweries since the 2016 midyear report, and a new all-time high number of American breweries.
Not to mention that on top of theses 5,562 existing breweries, another 2,700-plus are planning their opening within the year.
The other encouraging thing to take note of is craft breweries are also continuing to create jobs in the U.S. The latest craft brewing industry employment numbers show that craft breweries are employing almost 129,000 full-time and part-time workers nationwide. The Craft brew industries contribution to the U.S. economy is something that is significant, and invaluable.
Who’s Drinking All This Craft Beer?
Who’s drinking all this beer? Besides me of course. Well as the craft beer industry grows so grows the number of people who enjoy the different type of craft beers. Millennials continue to account for most of the weekly craft beer drinkers, followed by Gen Xers. Although it’s dismal for sure to see that men of drinking age are close to three times more likely to drink beer weekly than adult women, things are not always what they seem. It should be noted that women who do drink beer weekly are just as likely as men to drink a craft beer. Regardless of gender, close to 45 percent of beer lovers are craft beer lovers.
It’s also my observation that many purchasers of craft beer identify with brands that are independent and local, and that align with core concepts including authenticity, community, and sustainability.
One of the many great things about craft beer for the consumer is the variety of styles and brands. Craft beer drinkers are not typically very loyal to any brands. Craft beer drinkers are always looking for the next new beer to love. In a typical month, respondents said they purchase 3.6 different brands of craft beer. For the segment of people who drinks craft beer at least weekly, this increased to 4.4 different brands.
Creative brewers are bringing back traditional brewing techniques and introducing new and radical flavors to beer. This new generation of brewers have made people excited about beer again. The craft beer industry is here to stay and in my opinion, does live up to all the hype. It has in a relatively short time changed the light beer swilling culture of America and arguably the rest of the world?
Where are all these craft beer drinkers drinking craft beer? Unbelievably in a recent survey people mostly drink craft beer at home. Bars and brewery taprooms are still very important, especially when it comes to introducing people to new beers, but many of the survey respondents said they would rather drink craft beer at home or a friend’s house. No surprise: Sporting events ranked last as occasions to drink beer, mostly for cost and lack of choices, I’d also speculate. Consumers are also increasingly likely to pair beer with food, and 60 percent are likely to choose a specific beer style based on the food they’re eating.
What’s Next and Where Do We Go From Here?
The future looks bright for the craft beer industry and for those that love drinking craft beers. I for one love what is happening in the industry as I don’t have to travel far to find a brewery taproom, Bar, pub or even a craft beer festival near me.
What’s on your schedule today? Grab a loved one or call a friend and visit your favorite local brewery or beer bar. There is nothing much better in life than spending time with those we love and drinking well-crafted beer.
I happen to be heading out to local brewery here in Minnesota that is having a release party for one of their seasonal beers. The Irish Coffee Stout. Look for my review soon.
Until next time!