Craft Market Exceeds 12%

The preliminary numbers for 2015 are out, and the news is again pretty damn good. The Brewers Association today revealed that craft beer’s share of market, which finally passed 10% last year, is now 12.2% of the total beer market, by volume.

From the press release:

In 2014, craft brewers produced 22.2 million barrels, and saw an 18 percent rise in volume and a 22 percent increase in retail dollar value. Retail dollar value was estimated at $19.6 billion representing 19.3 percent market share.

“With the total beer market up only 0.5 percent in 2014, craft brewers are key in keeping the overall industry innovative and growing. This steady growth shows that craft brewing is part of a profound shift in American beer culture—a shift that will help craft brewers achieve their ambitious goal of 20 percent market share by 2020,” said Bart Watson, chief economist, Brewers Association. “Small and independent brewers are deepening their connection to local beer lovers while continuing to create excitement and attract even more appreciators.”

But wait, there’s more.

Additionally, in 2015 the number of operating breweries in the U.S. grew 15 percent, totaling 4,269 breweries—the most at any time in American history. Small and independent breweries account for 99 percent of the breweries in operation, broken down as follows: 2,397 microbreweries, 1,650 brewpubs and 178 regional craft breweries. Throughout the year, there were 620 new brewery openings and only 68 closings. One of the fastest growing regions was the South, where four states—Virginia, North Carolina, Florida and Texas—each saw a net increase of more than 20 breweries, establishing a strong base for future growth in the region.

Combined with already existing and established breweries and brewpubs, craft brewers provided nearly 122,000 jobs, an increase of over 6,000 from the previous year.

“Small and independent brewers are a beacon for beer and our economy,” added Watson. “As breweries continue to open and volume increases, there is a strong need for workers to fill a whole host of positions at these small and growing businesses.”

If you’re curious how those numbers are calculated, BA economist Bart Watson posted an explanation of the 2015 Craft Brewing Growth by the Numbers.

growth infographic

The Journey Of Beer Ingredients

Here’s a fun infographic showing the Journey of Beer Ingredients and called “Glorious Beer.” It was created by Lockstep Studio, who began selling the posters in early December of last year. It’s a different approach than most of these, following the separate journeys of water, barley, hop and yeast until eventually they meet up and have a party, so you can have one, too.

Click here to see the infographic full size.

Bernick’s Periodic Table

Several companies produce a Periodic Table of Beer Styles poster. Here’s another one, and another, and still one more. They all look more or less the same, and convey almost the exact same information. But yesterday I came across a new one, done by Bernick’s, a distributor in Minnesota, that in addition to most of the usual info, also added the preferred glass for each style. Although they did drop final gravity and any color range information. Still, it’s nice to see someone try to change it up a little. They also added some gold wreaths to indicate the best-selling varieties.

Click here to see the chart full size.

American Cities Drinking the Most Craft Beer

Usually, when they break down craft sales, it’s by state, so it’s interesting to see it done by city. Vinepair based their map, Cities That Drink the Most Craft Beer, on Nielsen dollar share data, so while that means it’s only mainstream data from major chains and traditional retail channels, it is still interesting to see how it shakes out. All of the top five cities are on the West Coast, while Washington D.C. leads the East. Of the five not in the West, three are in the Midwest, one is in the Northeast and the other is D.C. And it would appear there’s a large swath in the middle that has some catching up to do.

Click here to see the map full size.

The Beauty of Hops

An Australian beer store, the Beer Cartel, created a pretty cool infographic entitled the Beauty of Hops for an informative blog post, the beautiful marriage of hops and craft beer, which provides a nice overview of hops. Assuming it’s correct, I don’t think I realized Ethiopia is the third-largest hop producing nation. That was a surprise.

Click here to see the infographic full size.

The Big Brewers: Global Spread

Looking for something else this morning, I found this map created by Reuters from 2013, showing the dominant beer company for each country, effectively showing “the global reach” of each of the four biggest companies at that time. This was created the last time rumors were circulating about an ABI takeover of SABMiller, in October of 2013.


So I took the map and quickly replaced the teal of SABMiller with ABI blue to show what the global reach might look like post-buyout.


And here’s a side-by-side comparison. There will be a lot more blue.


SABInMillerBev, or “A Brief History Of Big Beer”

Niall, at the Missing Drink, has an interesting post about the possible buyout of SABMiller by Anheuser-Busch InBev. Entitled A Brief History of Big Beer, he provides some analysis of the deal, but I especially like his helpful chart of the M&A of all the major players, which is below. It’s great to see them laid out to encapsulate the history of those big deals, especially in recent decades.

Click here to see the chart full size.

Here’s his clever take on what the newly minted entity might be called, and what a new alphabet soup logo might look like. It was genius taking the “AB” from ABI and putting it with the “S” from SAB. It certainly will be interesting to see what new name (and logo) does emerge if the deal ultimately goes through.


The Definitive Guide To Beer Glasses

Admittedly the title might be a bit too grand and hard to live up to, but it is a nice overview of the sixteen most common types of beer glassware. Created by CorrChilled, a British supplier of cold technology and equipment, The Definitive Guide To Beer Glasses is, most likely, a low key way to promote their business but also seems like a nice outline on the subject.

Click here to see the infographic full size.

Silly Questions: If Your Blog Were A Beer

Okay, this is pretty silly, but starts out with some interesting comparisons. The infographic by Visually, asks the question If Your Blog Were A Beer, What Kind Would It Be? Once they start trying to define blogs by type of beer, it goes off the rails. For example, calling stouts “the heavyweights of the beer world,” shows that they don’t really understand their beer. Still, it’s fun little exercise, even it went goofy in its execution. Oh, and I don’t think I fit any of their identified blogs.

Click here to see the infographic full size.