Serious About Craft
Sales figures prove that interest in and demand for craft beer has never been greater, and one of the most innovative drivers of the whole craft scene – and certainly the loudest – is BrewDog. Take Stock spoke to Paul Cowdery at BrewDog to find out more…
What do you define as a craft beer?
For us, “craft” is beer brewed with a total focus on quality. That’s top malts and hops, innovative brews and perfect serves. It’s not beer that is brewed by accountants focused on their bottom line, rather than on quality and what it would mean to the beer. We are committed to creating exciting beers, brewed with a soul and a purpose.
How can an outlet maximise their craft sales?
Educate and excite your staff, have the correct glassware to showcase the beer in the best possible way, and have a range of craft beer that is global, national and local. There are some amazing breweries around the UK who are making beautiful beer with British ingredients, often with a Trans-Atlantic or Antipodean twist thanks to the addition of new world hops. Education of staff and literature to inform your consumer is critical in taking them on this journey from mainstream beer to awesome craft beer, so talk to your suppliers about the beer you’re buying, and what branded glassware and POS is available. It’s in their interest to help you!
What is BrewDog doing to drive beer quality upwards?
We are deadly serious about quality; there are two things we focus on at BrewDog: beer and people, and beer quality is such an important part of that. We are super critical of what’s best for our beer, and we’re stringent with where we sell it as a result. Canned beer quality has improved massively in recent years and is an incredible vessel for our hop-laden wares. It’s lightweight and recyclable, so better for the environment, and it completely blocks two of the biggest enemies of beer – light and oxygen.Customers are now drinking more canned craft beer than bottled which is a fantastic shift to see from a quality perspective. We are also investing in 20,000 quality audits to take place across our on trade and off trade customer base, enabling us to provide feedback on improving the quality of beer via these valuable one to one sessions in trade.
What’s next for craft beer?
Craft beer is exploding on both the UK on and off trade, with sales being blown out of the water every single month! Customers are crying out for their taste buds to be challenged and BrewDog along with many other amazing craft brewers are stepping up to make this happen. We at BrewDog are on a mission to make other people as passionate about great craft beer as we are – and this won’t happen overnight. We are expanding our footprint from our roots in North East Scotland by launching into new countries, as well as investing heavily in the UK’s burgeoning craft beer scene. This couldn’t be a more exciting time for craft.
What to stock
•Catering for all tastes and occasions is important, so look for what’s exciting and new on the craft beer scene
•Start with craft beers for non-drinkers and drivers – BrewDog’s Nanny State and Raspberry Blitz Sour Ale, both at 0.5% ABV, being prime examples
•Then look at what’s available locally, nationally and internationally. The trade press and your suppliers should help you
•Finally, think draught. New brews are coming on stream all the time – our collaboration series of American pale ale, German lager and wheat beer brewed in conjunction with industry leading partners being three great examples!
Ways to increase your craft beer sales
•Get your range right and promote it
•Educate your staff
•Get your price points right
•Encourage customers to trade up
•Perfect the serve