By 2018 global sales of beers brewed by smaller independent breweries was worth U.S. $38,183.52 million – and industry experts expect that craft beer sales will continue to grow at a rate of around 14% each year for the next three years.
For years many believed that the beer market in the developed world had reached saturation point and was in decline.
However, other industry pundits believed that craft breweries could continue to carve out a niche for themselves – possibly at the expense of larger multinational breweries. Sales figures now support this point of view.
The question is – why has craft beer seized the imagination of beer lovers across the globe?
We Don’t All Want The Same – We Want Choices
Craft beer continues to capture the imagination of those who want to explore something a little less mainstream. In an age where monopolies are a fact of life, there are still some beer drinkers who want their chosen tipple to reflect their individuality.
This is nothing new – as the growing market share of craft breweries continues to give senior management of the global beer giants sleepless nights.
However, those in the boardrooms of the multinational beer companies should have seen the writing on the wall some time ago. As long ago as 2015 craft beer had captured 12% of the U.S. market share. The U.S. could be viewed as the ‘canary in the coal mine’ as it is the second-largest beer market in the world – behind China, where market dynamics are different from other regions on the globe.
Europe has become a massive craft beer market with thousands of small craft breweries not only starting but also being successful and exporting. This has given to the rise of blogs that cover travel and craft beer such as sites like this one (TravelWanker.World) which actively seeking craft beer whilst travelling, this post is seeking out craft beer in Ljubljana, Slovenia
The most worrying trend for the beer giants is that the U.S. beer market was in decline in the period from 2008 to 2016. Employee numbers were down as was overall consumption.
Then something extraordinary happened – the number of breweries grew by 600%. It appears that beer lovers had not abandoned beer – they wanted something different from the run of the mill products that were increasingly viewed as lacking in substance – and choice.
3 Main Reasons For Craft Beers Growth
The first is that craft beer (by and large) offers a fuller and more interesting flavour profile.
The second is that there is a simply enormous variety of beers available.
The third is that consumers are more likely today to support local businesses.
Craft beer seems set to stay.
It offers something for every true beer lover. It allows consumers to enjoy flavour and uniqueness – and rewards exploration.