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[NPR] Beer Map: Two Giant Brewers, 210 Brands

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by mikeburd1128, Feb 19, 2013.

  1. Didn't see this posted already. It's actually the main story running on npr.org right now. In the description of the article they say, "We've put together a handy guide so you can know whose beer you're really drinking."
    BeerLover99, Willbfun and yamar68 like this.
  2. broodog

    broodog Savant (395) Illinois Jul 18, 2009

    There are a few craft beer geeks working at NPR in Washington. I've had a few chats with them, in hopes of guiding their editorial process. haha.
    dar482 and mikeburd1128 like this.
  3. gcamparone

    gcamparone Advocate (685) Rhode Island Dec 6, 2011 Subscriber Beer Trader

  4. zeledonia

    zeledonia Advocate (590) Washington Nov 23, 2008 Beer Trader

    The podcast version of the story talks about Grupo Modelo as being an economic "maverick", innovating and exerting downward pressure on prices of SAB-Miller and AB-InBev, who tend not to act as competitors with each other. Interesting stuff.
    BeerLover99 likes this.
  5. Mothergoose03

    Mothergoose03 Champion (875) Michigan May 30, 2005 Subscriber

    I'd have to do some searching but I don't think the brand list is 100% complete for the US market for either giant. However, my memory isn't coming up with any examples right now.
  6. JamesShoemaker

    JamesShoemaker Advocate (665) Michigan Sep 21, 2012 Beer Trader

    I read the US list with trepidation. I have mixed feelings about Goose Island, but otherwise I was relieved.
  7. gcamparone

    gcamparone Advocate (685) Rhode Island Dec 6, 2011 Subscriber Beer Trader

    Goose Island sticks out like a sore thumb
    RKPStogie likes this.
  8. I wasn't worried at all about GI being under the AB Inbev banner, until I read that the original owner is gone and an AB Inbev guy is now running the show. Hard to imagine someone from a corporate culture that has demonstrated zero understanding of craft beer drinkers and their purchasing habits properly guiding the operation over there.
  9. I disagree, I think Abinbev is fully aware that if they mess with recipes they will lose the beer geek dollar. They know that we value taste above all else, so they won't mess with it. If they did, we'd ditch BCBS for KBS, Oak Aged Yeti, etc., etc. They don't want that, so they will keep it the same and maybe up the distribution. Some would say that's great, which is understandable, but I'd argue that in the long run it's not good at all.

    To the OP. Thanks for this link, I appreciate the information. I do my best to spend my dollars on smaller, typically more locally owned companies, whenever possible. So a link like this is helpful. Cheers!
    KevinGordon and dachshunddude86 like this.
  10. emannths

    emannths Savant (445) Massachusetts Sep 21, 2007

    Don't worry. I'm sure if BAs can detect the differences in the spices that go into SN Celebration each year they'll be able to objectively taste the InBev in BCBS. ;)
    djsmith1174 and Providence like this.
  11. That's the thing, though. The perceived quality of the beer will go down if distribution goes up, even if the recipe stays exactly the same. People won't buy it, attempts will be made to make it more cheaply in order to sell it more cheaply so that more people buy it, rinse, repeat, and suddenly you have a ruined brand. I'm not saying it WILL go down this way, but it's certainly more likely now that AB Inbev is in complete control. AB Inbev's entire marketing strategy is to maximize sales volume. Successful marketing of a specialty beer like BCBS requires a completely different marketing strategy, one that I doubt an AB Inbev drone understands or appreciates.

    I mean, can you imagine if we start seeing Goose Island advertisements or product placement on TV? Craft beer drinkers like that the beer they drink is outside the norm. Taking a craft product mainstream that doesn't have mainstream appeal is a surefire way to kill it, another thing I wouldn't expect AB Inbev to understand.
  12. emannths

    emannths Savant (445) Massachusetts Sep 21, 2007

    Sam Adams advertises on TV. So do Great Lakes, Magic Hat, Saranac, Shipyard, Breckenridge, and Boulevard. Founders and Summit both do billboards. Nearly every craft brewery takes branding very seriously, and many have full-time marketing employees. Marketing and craft beer are not the strange bedfellows they are often made out to be.
    sjverla and Norica like this.
  13. Interesting. I never thought of it that way. We do kind of like our "fringe" status, don't we?
  14. Kyrojack

    Kyrojack Advocate (515) Indiana Oct 9, 2012 Beer Trader

    "People won't buy it, attempts will be made to make it more cheaply in order to sell it more cheaply so that more people buy it, rinse, repeat, and suddenly you have a ruined brand."

    I recall seeing on a forum somewhere the Budweiser's recipe was changed after a year or so of being under InBev control. I don't know it that is true or not though. But if it is true, then I'm certain that the recipe of most if not all of Goose Island's brands will be tampered with at some point.

    Charge the same price and decrease the cost to make the product and put in on more shelves. InBev wouldn't do a thing like that would they? ;)
  15. emannths

    emannths Savant (445) Massachusetts Sep 21, 2007

    The flavor of Budweiser has been drifting for decades. And let's not forget that recipe changes in the craft beer world are common too.