Sunday, May 22, 2016

'Craft' beer data, 2016 edition.

DRAFT Magazine recently published a concise summary of the state of 'craft' beer, as it was revealed in numbers, percentages, and statistics during the 2016 Craft Brewers Conference.

Beer By The Numbers

Forgive me, DRAFT; I've reposted the data here. The rest of you, please go to the original article, Beer By The Numbers, for more.
  • 1%:
    The share, in dollars, of the total beer market controlled by craft beer.

  • 12%:
    The share of the total beer market by sales volume.

  • 2.8 million:
    The growth in the number of barrels of craft beer sold over 2014’s numbers.

  • 25%+:
    the percentage of breweries that increased their brewing capacity by 50 percent or more in 2015.

  • $36.58:
    The average price of a case of craft beer.[That's $8.92 per six-pack. That's low; I don't know where they're shopping!]

  • 6,080:
    The number, as of December 2015, of active TTB brewery licenses.

  • 4,283:
    The number, as of December 2015, of operating breweries.

  • 1,797:
    The number of owners holding licenses for breweries they likely plan to open within the next two years.

  • 620:
    The number of breweries that opened in 2015 (this is actually down from the all-time high of 881 in 2014)
  • 67:
    The number of breweries that closed in 2015.

  • 3,925:
    The number of breweries in the U.S. producing between 0 and 7,500 barrels of beer each year. Together, these small breweries make up nearly 92 percent of the total number of beer producers in the country, but they only produce about 1.5 percent of all the beer we drink.

  • 21:
    The number of breweries in the U.S. producing more than 2 million barrels of beer each year. Though a fraction of the brewery total, these producers make 84 percent of all beer consumed in the country.

  • 26.5%:
    The percentage of supermarket beer sales, in dollars, owned by India Pale Ales. This means that more than a quarter of all craft beer sold at supermarkets is an IPA of some sort. The next closest style, “seasonal,” makes up about 14 percent of the dollar share.

  • 199%:
    The growth over last year, in sales, of session IPAs.

  • 250%:
    The growth, in sales, of “tropical-flavored” beer variants. (A little more about flavored beers: In 2015, sales of brews spiked with oranges and tea increased 70 percent and 719 percent, respectively. Apple-, raspberry- and blackberry-flavored beer sales decreased by an average of about 13 percent.)

  • 45%:
    The percentage of people over 21, according to a Nielsen survey, who said that whether a beer is made locally is “very important or somewhat important” to their purchase decisions. Narrow the respondents to those aged 21 to 34, and the percentage goes up to 53. Only 34 percent of respondents in the same study said that wine’s local production was at least “somewhat important” to them; 23 percent said the same about liquor.

  • 16:
    The number of states with 100 or more breweries.

  • 21:
    The number of states with at least two breweries per 100,000 drinking-age adults.

Brewers Association

The [U.S.] Brewers Association defines a 'craft' brewery NOT as a standard of quality —even though the term 'craft' is often brandished with fervid zeal as such— but as a requisite for membership in the association.
An American craft brewer is small, independent, and traditional.
  • Small:
    Annual production of 6 million barrels of beer or less (approximately 3 percent of U.S. annual sales). Beer production is attributed to the rules of alternating proprietorships.
  • Independent:
    Less than 25 percent of the craft brewery is owned or controlled (or equivalent economic interest) by a beverage alcohol industry member that is not itself a craft brewer.
  • Traditional:
    A brewer that has a majority of its total beverage alcohol volume in beers whose flavor derives from traditional or innovative brewing ingredients and their fermentation. Flavored malt beverages (FMBs) are not considered beers.

That being said, there is no legal definition of a 'craft' brewery (or even a Brewers Association definition of 'craft' beer). There is, however, a tax-tier differentiation. 

Under current federal law, breweries making less than two million barrels annually pay seven dollars of excise tax per barrel on the first sixty-thousand barrels they brew, and eighteen dollars per barrel on every barrel thereafter. Breweries producing more than two million barrels per year pay eighteen dollars per barrel on each and every barrel they brew. 

Steve Hindy, owner/president of the Brooklyn Brewery, has defined 'craft' beer this way: "The beer drinker decides what a craft beer is." Today is the final day of American Craft Beer Week 2016. Enjoy it, however you might define it: 'pushing the boundaries' or just plain old brewing it tasty.


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