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Does it matter who owns the brewery?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by jazzmac, Feb 14, 2013.

  1. abkayak

    abkayak Advocate (520) New York Jan 8, 2013 Beer Trader

    This makes total sense....scary thought
  2. But if someone were trying to limit the amount of money they spent on those items you listed above, would you give them a little more credit in the stance they take? Would you understand where they were coming from?
  3. UNCCTDawg

    UNCCTDawg Savant (430) North Carolina Nov 30, 2011 Beer Trader

    I would. I just love America man, everyones opinion counts! :confused:
  4. UNCCTDawg

    UNCCTDawg Savant (430) North Carolina Nov 30, 2011 Beer Trader

    Now... Beer me a Bud "Black Crown" or whatever it's called and lets get this weekend started!
  5. Good to hear. I can't speak for everyone, but I am certainly doing much more than just passing on a $3 pint of BMC in my attempts to support American businesses and fair business practices.

    SammyJaxxxx likes this.
  6. Ha ha, how about I grab you a Sam Adams Double Agent instead?;)

    But you're right...let's get this weekend started <walks to the fridge>
    SammyJaxxxx and UNCCTDawg like this.
  7. UNCCTDawg

    UNCCTDawg Savant (430) North Carolina Nov 30, 2011 Beer Trader

    That's good to hear!!!
  8. Hanzo

    Hanzo Champion (975) Virginia Feb 27, 2012

    Outside of GI what other highly regarded craft breweries have they bought?
  9. Keep in mind that a lot of distributors out there are direct representatives for AB-I & Miller-Coors. In smaller markets, simply relying upon the distros that are truly independents means a very limited selection. Where I'm at, the local M-C distro carries the area's lion's share of craft (Oskar Blues, Bell's, Abita, Sweet Water, etc) and a more-than-fair number of European. There's been good along with the occasional bad. If it weren't for these companies representing American craft, I'd probably still be drinking Black Label or Swiller Low Life. As these companies are, in part, funded by the efforts and sales of the macros, we have to accept that "evil" will always exist in our growing beer universe. I don't know about you guys, but I like variety. I also notice beers from, say Van Steenberge, that are distributed throughout the state by multiple companies. One carries Witches' Brew, one carries Duvel, another carries Piraat. Don't know how that happens, but it does. One company carrying any one or more of those examples could easily be one of the big boy macros. There's no ownership involved (the 25% or greater criteria mentioned in other threads above), only inventory and delivery. Does the end justify the means?
  10. They own tons of breweries, but craft specifically, these come to mind: Bass, Pilsner Urquell, Spaten, Hoeggarden, and Leffe. Those breweries, as for what I understand and I could be wrong, where places that produced well crafted, artisinal brews. Those of course, are all abroad. Goose Island is the biggest US craft brewery they have bought (they own other US breweries, like Rolling Rock but I don't consider them craft). So my fear is that their behavior abroad is going to start taking shape here.
  11. None.


    But - and we're obviously playing with hypotheticals here - what if they did acquire, say, 4 or 5 more large craft breweries? Then you've got all the money from all those breweries going to ABInbev. And pretty soon, they start to look at what's really making money, and what isn't.

    The least popular seasonals would be first to be axed. Then the expensive, time consuming barrel ageing plans get looked at. Next up, it's the expensive hop varietals that get looked at.

    Hypothetical, for sure. But implausible? Hell no.
  12. Not MAKING A FUCKING STAND, but at least making a choice I'm happier with. And, to your examples above-

    I bought my house as it already was, so I had no opportunity to effect the materials, nor did I have the option of having a house built.
    I don't support businesses that use illegal workers (though that's a whole other issue)
    I don't have the option of buying an "american made" car. I've been informed by an apparently knowledgeable source that likely the best I could do would be about 85% "american made".
    I have NO option to buy gas or oil that I know the providence of.
    I don't eat fast food.

    But I CAN easily go buy some beer that I KNOW:
    Who brewed it.
    Where it was brewed.
    Who gets the profits.

    So I'm going to win the battle I can, and not stress over the ones I have no choice on.

    Now, there was talk about starting the weekend? Soon? ;)
  13. UNCCTDawg

    UNCCTDawg Savant (430) North Carolina Nov 30, 2011 Beer Trader

    Nice... Since this revolution has started, I have one request. Please don't burn down Goose Island before I'm able to grab one of those BCBS Snifters?!?! I am a bit of a glassware junkie...
  14. jmw

    jmw Savant (450) North Carolina Feb 4, 2009

    Side topic though it is in this riveting thread, I'm not so sure that I agree totally with what America did to the indigenous inhabitants. I think I'll put my money elsewhere.
  15. Ha! Wait, what? A revolution?? Screw that, I don't have the time for that!

    I've got nothing against GI for selling out to ABInbev. While I don't buy their beers now, I know plenty that do, including friends. And if they enjoy those beers, I fully hope they continue to have the opportunity to do so.

    That's actually part in parcel to my issues with ABInbev ownership. Pretty much everyone in the tasting group I'm a part of LOVES BCBS. But what if, as suggested, down the road ABInbev decides that it's just too much trouble to have all those expensive barrels of beer just sitting around and aging. And if GI is selling tons of 312 and Honkers... maybe ABInbev decides that BCBS just isn't worth it.

    GI would likely NEVER have made that decision. But can anyone guarantee that ABInbev won't?
  16. I think a little research is in order. InBev, was known as Interbrew. Interbrew has a track record of buying breweries and pretty much destroying the product lines. Belle Vue, Hoegaarden, Leffe, all dumbed down so bad that those beers are a shadow of their former selves. It's not going to happen overnight but GI will slide just like every other brewery they have taken control of. AB/InBev is all over the map, and they are struggling with Craft. Craft isn't going to go away they just want a big piece of the pie...
    SammyJaxxxx likes this.
  17. jazzmac

    jazzmac Savant (275) Connecticut Nov 8, 2002

    Just some facts:
    The overall beer industry is 200,000,000. Craft beer is 11,000,000 (of which over 2M is SA) so overall we are SMALL. You want to know why your local store/bar carries so much BMC? BECAUSE IT PAYS THE BILLS!
    The original thought on this thread was about ownership and locality. We all have a tendency to bitch and moan when Brewery X doesn't send our area enough Imperail Barrel Aged Dry Hopped Brett Super Quad IPA, but you know what most of us live down the street from a brewery making pretty good beers. I'm not saying stop the search for the whales and drink what you want, but give the local guy some of your money too. He hires local, pays local taxes, and is trying to better the community.
  18. Absolut

    Absolut Advocate (665) California Sep 19, 2011

    depends on what you mean by does it matter. if the goal is to enjoy a great beer, then why care?

    if the goal is to support the smaller guy vs. the larger corporation, then yes, it should matter.
  19. SammyJaxxxx

    SammyJaxxxx Poobah (1,045) New Jersey Feb 23, 2012 Subscriber Beer Trader

    I meant to use Shock Top My mistake.
  20. SammyJaxxxx

    SammyJaxxxx Poobah (1,045) New Jersey Feb 23, 2012 Subscriber Beer Trader

    I am familiar with Interbrew's history. The argument is not they are going to ruin GI though.
  21. SammyJaxxxx

    SammyJaxxxx Poobah (1,045) New Jersey Feb 23, 2012 Subscriber Beer Trader

    Exactly. and not just beer. Support your local hardware store over Walmart. Support your local sporting goods store instead of Sports authority.etc.
  22. Apparently you didn't actually read my post. I 'm glad I gave you an excuse to have an attack if the vapors.
  23. Shagator

    Shagator Savant (420) Kentucky Mar 17, 2012

    Im just curious, but is Straub not considered a Craft Beer?
  24. MarioM

    MarioM Advocate (610) California Sep 13, 2009

    I don't know, if I saw a Barrel Aged Stout by the Taliban I would be very very curious...
  25. Shagator

    Shagator Savant (420) Kentucky Mar 17, 2012

    i have read most of these and Im not sure where I stand. I dont go to Chik Fil A because of their anti gay stances. I try to avoid other places because they wont pay benefits and therefore wont have full time employees. When it comes to beer, there are other issues. I dont like the majority of the beers that are produced by BMC; because I dont like the taste. However, IMO, they do care about the customer and who is consuming their product. I loosely compare this to banking. The Chases and the BOAs dont really care about the customer, but they offer a product that is greatly acceptable to the masses. The small community bank prides them self on service and making sure the consumer gets what they want. This is the differential for the little guy. This translates to a lot of good breweries, but not all. I think the little brewery or big brewery needs to realize that the consumer comes first. As soon as they decide to distribute their beer, they are no longer on their own and they have higher standards and they need to meet their customers needs and demands. I dont think this is flowing down to them and that why we are paying unbelievable prices and waiting for beer
  26. Premo88

    Premo88 Champion (865) Texas Jun 6, 2010

    Who brews the beer matters to a degree, but if a BMC was producing Pliny the Elder, wouldn't everybody still be drinking it?

    The fact seems to be the BMCs don't make beers like Pliny the Elder. BMCs (at least in the U.S.) simply don't make what I'm drinking from the smaller companies. (BTW, is Chimay a BMC? Samuel Smith's? I don't think of them as one, but my god ... you can get Chimay EVERYWHERE! And Sam Smith's is everywhere. So what's the definition of a BMC? Hell, Arrogant Bastard is ON TAP on every street corner these days it seems ... when does that become flooding the market like Miller Lite has flooded the market?)

    I love America and absolutely love the fact that we all can enjoy some damn good beer made here in the States. But I freely admit I love Duvel, love Chimay Red and White and love a few English beers. LOVE Bitburger. So I don't need "American-made" stamped on the bottle/can/tap to be happy.

    But with that said, I *DO* try to support Texas beers, and especially Karbach in Houston. St. Arnold's, No Label, Southern Star, Real Ale, Rahr & Sons, Lakewood, Deep Ellum ... all of them ... I very much want these breweries to succeed, and I'm hoping to find a lot of their beers fit into my top 20 or 30, so that when I want a good IPA, I can go Texan ... a good pilsener, Texan ... a good bock, Texan.

    In the end, though, what a beer tastes like is all that matters to me. Good taste, good beer. Bad taste, bad beer.
  27. jesskidden

    jesskidden Champion (810) New Jersey Aug 10, 2005 Subscriber

    Not according to The Brewers Association, on their now-deleted pdf Infographic from November 2012 entitled LIST OF DOMESTIC NON-CRAFT BREWERS:
    Unlike the situation with Schell's, Straub (along with Leinenekugel, Yuengling and a few others) was a dues-paying member of the Brewers Association when they were put on the "blacklist".
  28. Any confirmation on this?
  29. jazzmac

    jazzmac Savant (275) Connecticut Nov 8, 2002

    It's well known in the industry. Just ask someone who's in the business. There's nothing wrong with it, just an example of ownership that people don't know about.
  30. jesskidden

    jesskidden Champion (810) New Jersey Aug 10, 2005 Subscriber

    The partial ownership of those breweries isn't mentioned on L. Knife's rather thorough timeline history of it's industry purchases of, and partial stakes in, various distributorships and importers - L. Knife & Son Companies - which is why some folks are interested in learning more about it.
  31. Supporting small/indie suppliers is great in any consumer affair needing fresh competition. I just want to counter the argument taken to the extreme of shunning anything else, including your former favorites if they sell out to bigger makers. 1. Getting a beer to market requires considerable capital investment; if there is no exit to that investment, no one will enter. In some glorious cases, that means a brewer becomes self-sustaining and can hand its torch down to future generations. Not in all cases, sadly. 2. If someone of scale makes a good product and it gets support, it will stick around. I love to support the happy warriors and new aspirants, but no need to be absolutist about it. My 2ยข
  32. Focusf111

    Focusf111 Savant (340) Vermont Jun 21, 2012

    Yes and no. I always wanted to try goose island's beers, but since they've been bought out by the beerism version of satan (AB Inbev) I havent bothered. Their beers may be great, but I dont really feel right handing money to the company the wants to run my favorite breweries out of business. however I have a 2010 matilda and a 2011 sofie that were extras in a trade that I will drink, and to be honest, if someone GAVE me fresh GI I'd take it.
  33. While your insight is appreciated, I don't really think it's necessary to offer that suggestion.
  34. rocdoc1

    rocdoc1 Savant (460) New Mexico Jan 13, 2006

    We've got nothing local, should I quit buying beer?
    Spaten is owned by Inbev, I'll buy that beer any day. As long as Spaten continues to be delicious, affordable and available it will always have a place in my fridge. If I could get GI down here I would have a fridge full of Matilda, regardless of who the parent company is.
  35. I don't know about well known. I've been in the industry for 4 years, which admittedly isn't very long, but I feel like if it was fairly well known then I would have heard about it. Eh well. I don't think there's anything wrong with being supported by a big company like that; it's incredibly tough to start your own business and keep it going without some help. It's just that for me personally, I don't want my own money to go to a company that continuously tries to bully me. And again, this is a personal decision on my part. I won't make my fiance feel guilty about buying MBC or 6P because it's not a big deal to her. I probably won't even tell her because she doesn't care.
  36. Spaten brings back memories of some good days in Munich, and I will still drink it. Same for Leffe and Hoegaarden on rare occasions, as there are some OK memories from Belgium that are associated with those beers.
  37. rlcoffey

    rlcoffey Advocate (515) Kentucky Apr 20, 2004

    Widmer, Kona, Red Hook, in part.
  38. rlcoffey

    rlcoffey Advocate (515) Kentucky Apr 20, 2004

    The only thing I can add is that Six Point is distributed in KY by Beer House, which is an L Knife company (since 2011). And I dont remember seeing Six Point before that.
  39. Hanzo

    Hanzo Champion (975) Virginia Feb 27, 2012

    Do they fit into highly regarded?
  40. As far as distributors owning parts of breweries, if it is legal in that state, OK.

    There are breweries that have owned or started distribution companies. Stone in CA, and Two Brothers in IL.