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Brewers Association seeks to differentiate craft beer with Independent Craft seal

Brewers-Association-Independent-Craft-stamp-badge-logo-BeerPulseThe landscape of craft beer has gone from one of unfettered growth to that of a battleground for small, independent brewers fighting to eek out a place in the now crowded marketplace. To make the fight more difficult, the two mega brewers that control 90% of the  United State’s beer production — Anheuser-Bush/InBev and Molson Coors — seem to be on a tear to snatch up as many craft brewers as they can, muddying the field and confusing consumers as to who actually produces the beer they are drinking.

According to a blog post dated July 19 on the Brewers Association’s (BA) website, as the craft beer movement started to reach its crescendo and begin slowing, brewers began speaking out regarding the need for a way to differentiate their products from those produced by the mega brewers or breweries owned by them. An idea that had been kicked around for decades came to the forefront again and, on June 27, 2017, the BA announced the creation of the Independent Craft Brewer seal.

The seal is a logo designed to be displayed on packaging and advertising on products brewed by breweries that conform to the BA’s definition of a craft brewery. To qualify, a brewery must produce less than six million barrels of beer annually and be less than 25% owned by alcohol industry member that is not itself a craft brewer. It depicts an upside-down beer bottle that symbolizes how the craft brewing movement turned the beer brewing industry on its head.

During the design of the seal, research showed that almost all beer lovers have some interest in a “certification badge” or seal to identify independently owned craft breweries believing such a seal would support small businesses. Indeed, a Brewbound/Nielsen Harris Poll of 2,000 beer lovers conducted in May 2017 indicated overwhelmingly that beer drinkers want to know who is making the beer they drink.

“People want to know when they are supporting locally owned and operated businesses, in this case breweries, that are independent from the big corporations,” said Sean Nordquist, Executive Director of the Florida Brewers Guild. “People want to know that their money is going towards local businesses rather than multi-national corporations.”

 

With the seal, the BA hopes to clarify who is making the beer consumers are drinking. Especially as the mega brewers continue to purchase craft brewers and introduce “crafty” beers to the market that mimic craft styles.

Since the announcement of the seal, nearly 25-percent of the independent craft brewers in the United States have adopted it in some form.

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Posted by on July 20, 2017 in Beer, Beer News

 

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Oskar Blues reports record growth over 2014

IMG_1114Oskar Blues Brewery is on a roll. First they pioneered using cans to package craft beers setting off a stampede of followers, then they were the first of three larger craft brewers to build a brewery in the Asheville, N.C. area. Now, on the strength of their core brand Dale’s Pale Ale and two new brands — Pinner Throwback IPA and Oskar Blues IPA, the brewery is experiencing record and explosive growth. These factors have contributed to help the brewery achieve a 28% rate of growth of 2014.

Read the press release below for more details.

Longmont, CO & Brevard, NC– Oskar Blues Brewery, the first craft brewery in the country to brew & hand-can their beer in November 2002, continues explosive growth in 2015 and earned a position in the top half of the Inc. 5000 list of fastest-growing private companies in America for the fifth year in a row.
Colorado’s funky and unapologetic brew-pub has grown to become the largest American craft brewery to package beer exclusively in cans, while reaching towards 200,000 BBLs in 2015.  The brewery climbed to 24th on the Brewers Association Top 50 Breweries list which ranks craft breweries based on beer sales volume.
Growth continues to be fueled at both East and West Oskar Blues breweries. The North Carolina brewery in Brevard added a second 50-barrel mash tun, a silo capable of holding 100,000 pounds of spent grain and is in process of completing the second phase of its 17,000 square foot expansion project. The Colorado brewery acquired an additional 60,000 square feet last year in Longmont and is increasing capacity and developing an Oak Aging event venue.
In addition to capacity increases, strong double digit growth of Dale’s Pale Ale including a 43% YTD growth trend in Total U.S. Food (Scans) has led the way.  In fact, the original craft beer in a can and flagship of Oskar Blues Brewery remains 50% of the brand mix amongst strong new brands Pinner Throwback IPA and Oskar Blues IPA.
The release of Pinner Throwback IPA (6-packs, 12-packs and draft) and Oskar Blues IPA (6-packs) as year round core packages added firepower to an already strong can-centric brand family. The addition of Pinner Throwback IPA cans to the CANundrum Mixed 12-packs (Dale’s Pale Ale, Mama’s Little Yella Pils, Old Chub Scotch Ale) is seeing strong 70% growth rate vs. 2014 depletions.
Development of the Oskar Blues sales team continues, eclipsing 68 reps including an experienced chain team. The brewery has expanded distribution to 44 U.S. states and plans to reach all 50 states by mid-year 2016.
Oskar Blues’ 2015 milestones:
  • Oskar Blues Brewery Depletions growth is at 28% YTD
  • Dale’s Pale Ale 6-pack cans are experiencing 43% growth and are the leading craft can 6-Pack in US Total Food while Oskar Blues Brewery growth is at 60% growth in that segment
  •  CANundrum Mixed 12-pack growth is at 70% YTD
  •  Pinner Throwback IPA, a 4.9 % crushable beer, available year-round in cans and on draft has surpassed Mama’s Little Yella Pils in 2015 sales
  •  Oskar Blues IPA, a 6.43 percent beer using Australian hops is available in cans across the country and soon to be on draft
  • Increased distribution to 44 states
Oskar Blues continues to bring innovation to the craft beer industry. The introduction of the Crowler Seamer by Oskar Blues and Ball Corporation provides recyclable 32-ounce cans filled with fresh draft beer to taproom customers for off-premise consumption. In 2015, nearly 200 other breweries and bars across the country purchased Crowlers and cans, creating a side business at the brewery that has accelerated quickly and organically.
 
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Posted by on September 17, 2015 in Beer News

 

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Gainesville gains another brewery; First magnitude Brewing Company

firstmagA university professor with a Ph.D. in Education Administration seems an unlikely fit for founding and opening a craft beer brewery. Nevertheless, John Denny (a.k.a. Dr. John) and a group of friends are planning the opening of their Gainesville, Fla. brewery, First Magnitude Brewing Company for the weekend of August, 23.

The story of First Magnitude is a familiar one; a group of friends got together and came up with an idea for opening a craft beer brewery. The four friends all had other jobs and children making the idea of opening a brewery risky, but worthwhile in their opinion. So, with plenty of help from the Florida beer community, the group began the process of putting together a winning formula for a brewery in the burgeoning Florida market. As stated on the brewery’s website, their formula spoke to the group’s desire, “… to make excellent beer, have a great space for people to come and enjoy a pint, be an exceptional place to work, and be a big part of our local community.”

The team consists of Denny, Meg The Losen who serves as president and managers of all things outside of brewing, Christine Denny who serves as communications and outreach manager, Wells The Losen who is in charge of distribution along with financial responsibilities and Eric Dreyer who, with Denny brews the beer for the company.

There is no shortage of talent in the brewing team with Denny having won several awards in Florida beer competitions. He also serves the community as an active BJCP certified judge. He also co-produces and hosts Homebrew Talk, a popular program on Gainesville’s community Internet radio. Dreyer has brewed more than 150 batches since he began brewing in 2007. Over the years he has accumulated more than 35 medals in beer competitions including a Best of Show pale ale.

First Magnitude will feature three year-round beers when they open, the brewery’s website describes them:

Siren Blond Ale

“…brewed with an American two-row pale malt base with a generous amount of Vienna malt and a touch of Victory to add complexity and aid in head retention. Warrior hops are used for bittering, and the floral and spicy notes come from a combination of Hallertau Mittelfrüh and German Tettnang hops. Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5%.”

72 Degree Pale Ale

“72° features American two-row as a base malt with Munich malt to balance the hop flavor and Crystal malt to provide color and a bit of sweetness. Chinook hops provide the bittering while Cascade and Centennial hops are used for flavor and aroma. The aroma is enhanced by dry hopping. ABV: 5.5%.”

Drift English Mild

“…brewed with American two-row pale malt as a base and has Crystal 20, Munich, Brown, Aromatic, Chocolate and Black Patent malts for a complex malt profile. Warrior hops are used for bittering and Hallertau Mittelfruh adds a subtle hop character. British Ale yeast gives it just a hint of fruity esters and a well-rounded flavor that will have you asking for another pour. “

You can visit the brewery’s tap room beginning Saturday, August 23 at:

1220 SE Veitch St.

Gainesville, FL 32601

Hours are 2:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Saturdays and 2:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

The Jax Beer Guy has partnered with the UBER car service in Jacksonville. Because of this partnership, you can receive a $20 credit for your first ride by simply using the promo code “JaxBeerGuy” when you register for UBER on your smartphone.

Click HERE to sign up now!

 
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Posted by on August 21, 2014 in Craft Beer Brewery

 

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Engine 15 brewing at Myrtle Street facility

Engine15_largeWay back in November of last year, we brought you the news that the owners of the popular Jacksonville Beach brew pub Engine 15 had purchased a duo of buildings in the LaVilla neighborhood near downtown (see article here). Their aim was to create a larger working brewery with a tap room and bier garten on Myrtle Street. Well, after months of refurbishing the old warehouse buildings and installing brewing equipment, it seems that the brewhouse is finally getting some use.

Over the past few months, whenever we run into Engine 15’s co-owners Luciano Scremin and Sean Bielman, the question is always, “How is the new brewery going?” Yesterday, in a post on the Engine 15 Facebook page, the two answered that question definitively in a video post.

“It’s finally alive,” Scremin says in the video with Bielman standing beside him and wort boiling happily behind him.

Known for their expansive list of craft beer at the beaches brew pub as well as their own brews, the Engine 15 team hope to expand the brewery’s reach outside the Jacksonville area with the increased capacity afforded by the new facility. But, they also hope to create a synergy in the LaVilla neighborhood with the tap room and bier garten to restore vibrancy to the area. Much in the same way the opening of Bold City Brewing Company and Intuition Ale Works has helped to gentrify the Silvertown neighborhood on the northern end of the King Street Beer District.

With beer finally being brewed at the new facility, Engine 15 is well on its way to bringing its goals within reach. We will be waiting for further announcements regarding the opening of the tap room in the near future.

Learn more about the brewery by watching the following video from P.207 Productions.

The Jax Beer Guy has partnered with the UBER car service in Jacksonville. Because of this partnership, you can receive a $20 credit for your first ride by simply using the promo code “JaxBeerGuy” when you register for UBER on your smartphone.

Click HERE to sign up now!

 
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Posted by on July 1, 2014 in Craft Beer Brewery

 

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