As beer growth slows, traditional breweries are looking beyond beer to hard seltzer and other spirit blends. And they’re finding the brewing process very accommodating.
“Beer makers face tough times.” – IndustryWeek
“Beer sales stay flat.” – USA Today
“Beer is dying.” – CNN
It’s enough to keep any brewer up at night. Outside pockets of growth in China, India and Brazil, most global markets are hitting a beer sales plateau at the hands of a more health-conscious consumer. One that drinks less alcohol, and looks for the kick without the calories when they do drink.
Stepping in not-so-quietly is the ready to drink (RTD) cocktail market. Spirits-based drinks, hard seltzer, cannabis-kombucha-coffee-infused. You name it, your customers are drinking it. Even craft beer loyalists.
Analysts agree it’s not a fad and the big producers know it’s an opportunity. 2019 saw the creation of a “Beyond Beer” division at Anheuser-Busch. And Molson Coors kicked off 2020 as the Molson Coors Beverage (not brewing) Company.
While hard seltzer brewing and the like isn’t for everyone, there’s a big upside for owners and investors open to line extensions. And it is more attainable than you might think.