Archive for October 19th, 2007

The age of American industrial brewing is over, proclaims Garrett Oliver in an op-ed article in the New York Times today. It is a sign in itself that the brewmaster of Brooklyn Brewery is invited to write such a piece, a sign of how craft beer has moved into the mainstream.

I can only applaud what he has to say:

Now Americans are moving away from spongy industrial bread, watery coffee, plasticized “cheese” and other wonders of modern food science. The top maker of white supermarket bread went bankrupt a few years ago.

Industrial beer is still the vast majority of the American market, and it’s not going away tomorrow, but there is no future in it. While industrial beers suffer flat or declining sales, craft brewers are experiencing double-digit growth. The big brewers now try to copy craft beers. European brewers, who once laughed at watery American beer, now look to the United States for inspiration.

MillerCoors is not a threat to craft brewers but a warning: we should not walk the road of overexpansion or be tempted by the lowest common denominator of the mass market. Miller, Coors and Anheuser-Busch were once small breweries making fine local beer, too. 

Go on, read the whole piece over at the NYT!

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