The merger is still dominating the news and I will touch on it. But, it’s Wednesday and you should be thinking about going to work, putting in your 8 or more hour and then celebrating with nice beer as the week starts heading towards the back stretch.
- We’ll start off with the merger and this article that paints a rosy picture of the craft beer community. I don’t necessarily disagree, but if you are going to say this merger won’t be so bad for craft beer (which I don’t think it will) you need to site more than just how much camaraderie craft brewers share. You might want to point out that this merger has more to do with emerging markets in Latin America and Africa than it does with the US. You could also point out that it might mean a limiting of this company’s ownership of distributors and that states are starting to look at ways of loosening distribution laws.
- Here is another article about the merger that doesn’t acknowledge that the major problem that craft brewers face isn’t necessarily the merger and the resulting beer behemoth, but the distribution laws this company has and will continue to use to eat shelf space. Many in craft beer think all distributors are evil. I have seen the results of bad distribution relationships and I have seen the results with good relationships. I think the laws need to be changed so that if the brewer finds the relationship isn’t working that they have an easier opportunity to extricate themselves before irreparable damage is done.
- This bill is a good thing. It will make the excise taxes a little fairer and it will cut the paperwork burden at the federal level a little less odious. However, as the next article will show you, the majority of the work the craft community has to do to make the laws fairer is at the state level.
- The first thing you will learn if you start reading about the craft beer laws in this country is that from state to state they are all different. Within a state, the alcohol and beer laws can vary from county to county and even within counties. That just means that to make alcohol and beer laws fairer, craft beer has to fight in each and every state and each and every state legislature. That is the only place the new beer behemoth will have an advantage in money and contacts.
- Here is a look at the place where craft beer does have an advantage: its community. Even after saying that isn’t enough of a reason to think the merger won’t have a deleterious effect on the craft beer world, it is important to remember that it still exists. Being local and being tight knit is how we will win in the end. I still believe the beer world will be very large beer companies and very small local breweries with very little in between, and that is fine by me.