I’ve neglected the Five Articles for the past week. It isn’t that I haven’t been reading articles and thinking about beer. It seems to be more that I want to do something different with the articles, I just can’t figure out what that difference is.
Anyway, the first article today is about the crowded growler market in Atlanta. My interest has little to do with beer as much as it has to do with this as a case study in how economics works. A new business market segment becomes available; people rush in to fill it; the market gets oversaturated; the market corrects itself by weeding out the weak. This is something that is going to happen in all the different segments of the beer market. All the new breweries that have come out of the woodwork in the last two to three years will not survive. The ones with bad beer and bad business models will fail.
Number two on today’s list is a short piece that adds nothing to the conversation about beer and food pairing. I highlight it solely because it is an article on a food association website. Craft beer people have been saying how great beer is when paired with food for a few years now. The food people are starting to realize it too and that makes a huge difference in the overall perception of beer and food.
One of the things I have learned from doing the Five Articles most days is how powerful the wholesale/distribution lobby is at the state level across the country. In Georgia, they basically bullied that state’s craft brewers back into 2013 distribution law wise. Now, in SC, they are pushing a law that is silly in other states that requires alcohol shipped from other states to “rest” for 24 hours at a warehouse in SC before it is sent to retailers.
The way to combat ABInbev’s growing need to buy every midsized brewery worth a damn by throwing as much money as humanly possible at them is to push beer lovers to drink local. While many of the new breweries popping up in small towns and in neighborhoods around the country has the downside that many of these breweries make bad beer and have bad business models they do have tremendous upside potential. That is more and more people have the ability to drink fresh beer owned operated and brewed locally. That should always trump buying beer from a company that at is heart doesn’t even like some of its own assets.