There, I said it. While it is true that large brewing companies are telling the truth, as no one would lie in an ad right?, people that drink craft beer laugh at their attempt to capture the beer flavored water crowd. You all know who I am talking about, heck we have all probably been in that crowd at some point, most in college when we needed to get cheap beer. (I will even admit that when it is 100 degrees outside and I have been working in the yard I will reach for a “domestic” before I go with the Imperial Stout, probably because it is close to water.)
We all know their pitches, Taste Great…Less Filling, Drinkability, The Banquet Beer, Triple Hops, Bottle Beer Taste in a can, Bitter Beer Face, The Champagne of Beers, Frogs, Horses, Dogs, Trains, Wide Mouth Cans (seriously? Like you can’t drink it fast enough?), Silver Bullets, Girls, Guys, blah, blah, blah. And we as a human race fell for it. (We fell for it so much that “imports” are trying to get in on the action, and the big three “domestics” are now “imports”.) For some it is a tradition, their dads and grandparent drank whatever watching whatever sports team while grilling some burgers on the Weber grill, for others it is because they have been drinking it since they started drinking and don’t see a reason to change. I fell into both kind of, my dad and grandpa drank Budweiser in Missouri listening to the Cardinals baseball games outside, and because of that I drank Bud products in college when I started drinking, or sometime around there. I even had the “Bud line of products is better than the whatever line of products because…” discussion (In college this usually centered over Natural Light vs. Keystone because we were poor, just to show you how far I have come!) But no more does this have to be the case!
Welcome to the beer matrix! We have been freed from our cocoon of slumber believing that those companies make the best beer in the world! For me it came from my brother introducing me to other “weird beers” at the liquor store, Thanks Ryan!, for others it comes in the form of a skiing trip to CO and having no other choice in beer that the local “stuff”. But whatever the reason, we are thankful, and there is a growing movement to increase the visibility of Craft Beer all over the world. These statistics from the Brewers Association are a taste of that growth.
- Growth of the craft brewing industry in 2008 was 5.8% by volume and 10.5% by dollars.
- The craft brewing industry produced nearly 8.6 million barrels of craft beer in the U.S. in 2008.
- The fastest growing sector craft brewing sector continues to be microbreweries, showing customer support for local breweries.
- The craft brewing sales share as of December ’08 is 4% by volume and 6.3% by dollars.
- Total U.S. craft brewing industry annual dollar volume is $6.3 billion.
These are exciting times for Craft Beer brewers and Craft Beer drinkers alike. It is a revolution from “The Man” and to remind yourself of that fact just watch this video http://www.vimeo.com/4298464 and see if you don’t find yourself in front of a nice Craft Beer.
And so to all of us out there making it happen, I say Cheers and stay tuned for some crazy stats on beer that will make you happy!
The words are yours I am done with mine,