It’s Friday. There is nothing more that needs to be said. Your job today is to make it to 5:00 and finally get to relax. Here are some beer links that may or may not help you do it.
- The Brewers Association sent out a press release about the merger and it says exactly what you would think a press release from an organization charged with defending craft beer would say. “Craft beer is great and the government should look into the merger to make sure it doesn’t hurt consumers or our members. Drink craft beer.” I agree with them, I just hate reading press releases that say nothing.
- This article points out 5 areas where the merger will possibly change the beer industry, two of which I actually think are real problems. First, the bigger companies will not run out of ingredients. Even in times of hop or malt shortages, their contracts will supersede all others simply because they are so big. Second, is how distribution will be effected. If the government allows these companies to big foot their distributors, will smaller craft brands get the exposure in local grocery stores that could help them grow their brands?
- Speaking of which, the big companies are already playing with the price of their brands, thereby increasing the price across the board for beer. One thing I didn’t see in this article was if the price of craft beer brands increased at the same rate as the big beer brands over the same time period. Did Boston Beer Company or Sierra Nevada or New Belgium have similar price increases, did they stay steady, or did they decrease relative to economic growth?
- Molson Coors has already made their move consolidating their SABMiller hold and so has Heineken with their purchase of half of Lagunitas. What will the other second level beer companies do? Will they follow Heineken’s path and buy regional craft brewers or maybe go after one of the big craft brewers like Boston Beer or Sierra Nevada? That is what the next 12-18 months will be about.
- Here is a little article about beer and Thanksgiving dinner. That is a great idea if you can get enough people at your Thanksgiving to give a good craft beer a try with dinner or dessert. Anyway, my Friday after Thanksgiving will be great and beer filled. For the first time in 8 years, I won’t be working and will get to sit around either at home or a craft beer spot of my choice and drink beer and watch whatever college football comes on that day. Yay!