Why we're staying small
Craft beer is at an all time high, with over 5,200 craft breweries in the US, a growth rate of 6.2% over last year. This is in stark contrast to the overall beer market which was stagnant (0% growth) last year. Despite the opportunity that craft beer still affords, not everyone is experiencing the same level of good fortune. One subset of breweries in particular (regional breweries, those producing >15,000BBLs/yr) are struggling to grow.
- Paul Gatza, Brewers Association Director
This slow growth is due to bi-directional pressures regional breweries are facing. Brand acquisition by macro breweries puts pressure from the top, and agile smaller competitors put pressure from the bottom. While the acquisitions have stopped for the time being, small nimble competitors are still coming to market in droves. Craft beer consumers continue to seek out new fresh tastes, and are willing to spend time and money to get them. Because of this, microbreweries and brewpubs delivered over 90% of the craft beer market’s growth last year.
Our plan is to stay small, be nimble, and keep on innovating. While we do have plans to grow (who doesn’t), we don’t plan on ever being big enough to be lumped into the regional brewery category. This is important to us because one of the biggest things we crave in our beer is variety. It’s really hard to get that kind of beer spectrum when you’re supplying beer to the whole east coast. By staying small and leveraging our customer collaborations not only will we foster local loyalty, we will be able to stay ahead of up-and-coming beer trends and continue to grow with the market.