I’m a little late on the Five Articles today. It’s worth it though because I get a little extra sleep and I found a bounty of good stories to pick from for today’s list. Get ready for a laws and money.
- As consolidation looms, more and more breweries are starting to seek out capital investors to fund their expansion plans. Brooklyn Brewery is just the latest. An aside about the consolidation I’ve been talking about in this space for a few weeks. I think we are headed to a place where because of consolidation and the growing influx of capital investors, breweries will either be really, really big, as in regional or larger, or really, really small, as in your neighborhood brewery.
- Change and growth are scary things and in Colorado brewing, it is really scary. A good point is made by the Colorado Brewer’s Guild spokesman in this article. Craft beer is a big business and to expect everyone to have pure beer motives as they enter the business and to not expect the big brewers to notice is naive. The nature of the beer business as a whole is changing and the nature of craft beer is changing along with it.
- Drunk college students do stupid things no matter what country you are in as this report from Germany shows.
- Here is the latest issue to crop up between Asheville brewers and NC ALE. At least this time the ALE managed to learn of a large beer festival in its jurisdiction before the day of the event. I also think it was a very responsible (if not overly responsible) for the group putting this even on to cancel it until they got true clarity on what was expected of them.
- That kind of clarity is what I think is missing in the ALE’s enforcement of the ABC Commission’s regulations. There are two related issues that I don’t think are particular to North Carolina. The first is, we have 3 separate interpretations of the rules governing brewers. The ABC Commission, the ALE, and the brewers are all on different pages. The ABC and ALE need to sit down with brewers all over the state and explain what the rules are and how they are enforced. There are so many interpretations because most of the laws and rules were written 30 to 100 years ago. Instead of rewriting the laws to keep up with changing times, the laws have been reinterpreted and tinkered with to satisfy multiple competing constituencies. By the way, if you’ve ever been in a bar when ALE agents roll in, they come in like Elliot Ness looking for a bunch of moonshiners.