In a story related to the news that craft beer growth was up 12% last year over the previous year, the southeast region of the country — including the states of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi and South Carolina — showed sales growth of almost 32%, the highest percentage in the nation. The sales figures used are from five types of retail locations: grocery stores, drug stores, convenience stores, big box retailers (warehouse stores, club stores, etc.), and liquor stores. The data was complied by Information Resources, Inc. (IRI) for a presentation to the Brewers Association last week.
Another interesting tidbit: seasonal beers are now the best-selling segment of beer, having eclipsed that of Pale Ale, which previously held the top spot.
Here are the geographic areas listed by their growth rate:
- Southeast = 31.6%
- Great Lakes = 28.1%
- Mid-South = 25.6%
- Plains = 20.8%
- Northeast = 19.1%
- South Central = 16.5%
- California = 13.7%
- West = 7.2%
Some additional observations.
1. Notice that there are seven states where beer cannot be purchased at grocery stores and the like.
2. What happened to Hawaii and Alaska?
3. Three of the regions showed growth of more than 25%
4. Only one region, the West (excluding California) was below 10% which suggests that craft beer is growing virtually everywhere and is not limited to small pockets of the country.