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Who not label if it's a craft beer or "pseudo"?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by LostTraveler, Dec 28, 2012.

  1. LostTraveler

    LostTraveler Savant (395) Maine Oct 28, 2011

    Stout_Combo, phooky and yemenmocha like this.
  2. "Blue Moon Brewing Co at the Sandlot - Denver, CO" is a member of the Brewers Association, as are each of the 20+ individual AB and MC breweries, their subsidiaries like Goose Island and the two Leinenkugel breweries, etc.

    The Brewers Association apparently doesn't seem to mind endorsing their up-to-$15,000 yearly dues check with the B.A. logo.
  3. Remember that time the Brewers Association tweaked their own definition of what a Craft Brewer is so that they didn't exclude their largest dues paying Craft Brewing member?
    afrokaze and SammyJaxxxx like this.
  4. Is "tweak" even really the right word when adding four million more barrels to the definition of "small"? ;)
    HenrikO, Chaz, Pahn and 4 others like this.
  5. DoubleJ

    DoubleJ Poobah (1,080) California Oct 13, 2007 Beer Trader

    Would this hypothetical proposal apply to imports as well? Or just American beers?
  6. Frankinstiener

    Frankinstiener Savant (405) Illinois Jul 28, 2009 Beer Trader

    Every micro and fake micro besides Schell's and a couple other legit breweries who also produce an adjunct lager would have the logo. If Shell's wanted their craft beers to be recognized by the BA I guess they would have to make a fake or separate brewery and try to make people believe they aren't the same company that makes Grain Belt.
  7. Don't like this idea at all. There are tons of conflicts of interest in having the entire industry pay dues to a single organization to make themselves "worthy" of the craft crowd. It gives incentive to the Brewer's Association to include as many breweries as possible, as it'll net them more dough and further reinforce their brand, and it gives them the power to decide who is and isn't "worthy" of their tag, putting them in too much of a position to impact other businesses. Plus, it indirectly penalizes breweries that just don't want to adhere to an organization or their guidelines, which seems inherently "uncraft-like".
    raffels and flayedandskinned like this.
  8. Isn't that already what they are doing? ;)
  9. DogTown

    DogTown Savant (295) California May 17, 2006

    I am a pro brewer interloping in this conversation but I am sickened by this entire Brewers Ass adventure. They are doing this stuff in our name as well as the names of all the smaller brewers who don't stand a rat's chance of ever losing a handle to any look-alike brand. I posted a longer thing on the last thread about this but the BA is defending only the interests of the largest of its membership who DO stand to lose future market share opportunities to the look-alikes. That means that the whole thing is about the self interest of those elements of the BA board of directors.

    The BA board is making this argument for 'authenticity' (another crushed and meaningless term) on the backs of the thousand plus very small and undeniably 'craft' brewers in order to retain something of that kind of credibility for themselves. They are playing with fire.

    The word 'craft' has been slowly made meaningless and that's a drag, but the truth is that when Michael Laybourn and Norman Franks of the pro to-New Albion were bootlegging their fabulous Thunder Beer they had never even heard of the term 'craft' beer. The were artists working to create something special.

    If you all call my brewery a 'craft' brewery, I am proud. If I have to claim to be a 'craft' brewer then I am doomed. The idea of 'defending' the term is even more ludicrous.

    I am not planning on renewing my membership in the BA next year...
  10. That will be interesting because while the Brewers Association has no problem with calling some of its biggest members (like A-B, MC, Yuengling) "non-craft brewers", have they ever listed a non-B.A. member brewery in it's annual Top 50 Craft Breweries press release?
    SammyJaxxxx likes this.
  11. If you're a beer geek who cares where your beer comes from, you simply take the time to familiarize yourself with the brands owned by the corporations that you wish to not get hold of your money. It takes a little effort but if it matters to you, it's time well spent.

    Slapping on the Brewers association logo to your label is meaningless to me because I know there would be political shadiness involved eventually.

    There shouldn't be any separate categorizing, branding, or class of brewers we deem as "craft". I hate that word anyway, it's just convenient to use so people understand what you're talking about. I like to think the brewers we all enjoy are redefining what "beer" is, and are not just creating this special cool-kids group known as "craft beer" that has a separate meaning than "beer". I'd rather we just take over "beer", if you get what I mean. Wishful thinking, I know...and I'll probably die before it happens.
  12. DogTown

    DogTown Savant (295) California May 17, 2006

    Well Jesskidden, I could care less if we are listed on anyone's ranking. I agree with George C Scott when he declined his Oscar for Patton.....

    There is a great poet (Robert Hass) who unknowingly wrote about the nuancing of foolish arguments like this. The luminous general idea in this instance is 'craft' beer....

    All the new thinking is about loss.
    In this it resembles all the old thinking.
    The idea, for example, that each particular erases
    the luminous clarity of a general idea.
    RobertV916 likes this.
  13. Etan

    Etan Champion (765) Wisconsin Jul 11, 2011

    Sorry, putting a BA label on a beer to mark it "real craft beer" is a stupid idea. The Brewer's Association should not have a monopoly on what is "craft" (whatever that means) and what is not.
  14. Hah. I mean, I don't really harbor any ill will towards the Brewer's Association. I generally think they're good people trying to do right by the little guys... but this whole "craft vs. crafty" debate has rubbed me the wrong way.

    History has proven, over a slew of different industries, that this kind of regulation could be potentially dangerous. At the end of the day, I just don't think, from a legal perspective, that small breweries are entitled to a plot of the market that big guys aren't allowed to touch. If they want to prevent big businesses from encroaching on their companies, they need to be better than them. They have the ability to be more creative, react faster, and do wilder, riskier shit that the craft market will fall head over heels for. If they can't remain competitive, it's harsh to say, but tough shit. That's not just the way business works, it's the way business NEEDS to work to keep industries on the cutting edge.
  15. No, I've read enough of your posts and tweets to realize that ;) but I'm more curious about it from a record keeping/historical basis, since your yearly barrelage and Lagunitas' meeting their 3 point "craft" definition is a matter of fact and shouldn't be a matter of being a dues paying member.
  16. Pahn

    Pahn Champion (850) New York Dec 2, 2009 Beer Trader

    i'm no libertarian, but the fact is: you need to educate yourself as a consumer.

    don't like being tricked into supporting an evil conglomerate? don't like drinking shittier beer? research.

    it's shitty that big companies try to pass off their shit beer as "locally hand crafted brew" or whatever, but you have a mouth with taste buds, you have a computer/smart phone (if you're reading this), you have a brain... figure that shit out and buy the good stuff.
  17. Todd

    Todd Founder (1,685) Colorado Aug 23, 1996 Staff Member

    Slapping the Brewers Association logo on labels would be pointless.
    • Most consumer don't know who they are or care.
    • The Brewers Association doesn't equal craft beer. Large brewers are paying members and the Brewers Association accepts their sponsorship dollars and allows them/takes their money to pour at their Great American Beer Festival. Their logo doesn't say "craft beer" either.
    On top of this: allowing a private club to essentially define what "craft beer" is (by defining what isn't a "craft brewer") for an entire country, solely based on their business/political agendas, has never sat well with me.
  18. SStein

    SStein Advocate (520) Colorado Dec 26, 2012 Beer Trader

    Instead of having an organization who has something to gain, why not set up an independent group who dictates what can be labeled "craft beer". Let it give honest guidelines and if your brewery meets the criteria than you receive the seal. This can be the same way the Belgians dictate what is and isn't a Trappist beer, an abbey beer, or just a family brewery. If a brewer falls out of the guidance then they have to remove the logo. If they don't want to have the logo, that's fine. However I think that if you create something separate from the Brewer's Assoc. then more people would be willing to respond; and it wouldn't look like they were pushing an agenda while still collecting the major brewer's money.
  19. I don't know - there have been several different organizations of brewers in the US just in the post-Repeal era - United States Brewers Association, Associated Producers of Cereal Beverages, United Brewers Industrial Foundation, Brewing Industry, Inc., Brewers Assoc. of America, Association of Brewers, the Beer Institute, etc. Lots of their members once printed those organizations' logos on their labels and I doubt it had very much influence on what people bought or even be considered what most would call "regulation".
  20. Oh, yeah. I was commenting on the "craft vs. crafty" debate as a whole, as to whether or not it should be required for full disclosure as to the back-end workings of the companies brewing beer. The BA label idea is just dumb, for a whole host of reasons.
  21. You mean you don't look for the SFA logo before you buy a bag of potato chips?;)
    AxesandAnchors likes this.
  22. DogTown

    DogTown Savant (295) California May 17, 2006

    Jesskidden... meeting their 3 point "craft" definition...

    As time has gone by on this recent 'who's cool and who's not cool' BA thing and even before I've felt a strong urge to renounce the whole 'craft' thing in our internal thinking and instead opt to be in the Beer Business.

    I make the best beer I can, MC and ABI make the best beer that they think they have to make. The triumphant news buried by all the insecurity on display is that The War Has Been Won. The biggest brewers in the US are making the kinds of beer that we all pioneered and are already making. This is a headline! The big brewers used to eschew small brewers as a fad, as a niche, as a nuisance. Today... well....
    RobertV916 and daysinthewake like this.
  23. Will you come to my next beer tasting?
    MichPaul and Chaz like this.
  24. The 'us against them' hivemind bullshit again. Fantastic. Good beer is always good beer, no matter who owns what or what you label it. Drink what you enjoy.
    ledzeppelin4 and darknova306 like this.
  25. jRocco2021

    jRocco2021 Savant (460) Wisconsin Mar 13, 2010 Beer Trader

    I don't need anyone to tell me what is and is not craft beer a quick google search can confirm this for me and besides that what difference does it make if its technically "Craft" or not I like to drink good beer so rather than my standards being based off the size of a company I make my beer purchasing decisions based and taste.
    fujindemon74 and bud914 like this.
  26. bud914

    bud914 Aficionado (150) New York Dec 6, 2008

    now that makes sense. i drink what i like. not to worried about what brewery although i do like to support the little guys and startups when i can. but the beer has to be good first.
    jRocco2021 likes this.
  27. UCLABrewN84

    UCLABrewN84 Poobah (1,475) California Mar 18, 2010 Verified

    End of thread.
  28. ledzeppelin4

    ledzeppelin4 Savant (400) Illinois May 18, 2011

    Agreed. Screw it, it's all "craft" beer and Beer A is better "crafted" to my palate and you like Beer B more. But maybe next year Beer A will be your favorite and Beer B will be mine.
    kingofhop likes this.
  29. I hope they hurry up and get these things on labels! I've been wallowing in indecision forever now because I have no idea what I'm supposed to buy! :eek:
    protosv, AndrewBV and jRocco2021 like this.
  30. i hear ya... when I read about triple hopping i felt i got hood winked when i bought what i thought was a good craft beer..... DARN YOu MiLLER LITE........
  31. A number of folks posted that it is ‘easy’ to find out who brews a given beer. From my perspective it is not always that easy. Below is something I posted in another thread:

    “So, a related story: I am watching football game on TV and I see a commercial for Henry Weinhard’s beer. I go to the Henry Weinhard website to see who makes this beer. In small, hard to read font, in the lower left corner: 2012 Blitz-Weinhard Brewing Co., Hood River, OR * Milwaukee, WI

    So, who is Blitz-Weinhard Brewing Co.?

    Wikipedia states: “The Henry Weinhard's Private Reserve brand survives today and is currently owned by SABMiller, and some of its beers are brewed under contract at the Full Sail Brewing Company.”

    On another web site (beerpulse.com) I see:
    “Joe M. on September 13, 2012 at 11:54 am said:
    I bought a 12 pack of Henry’s Private Reserve a few months ago, and the code stamped on the bottle indicated that it was brewed at the Miller brewery in Irwindale, CA.”

    So, if you are willing to spend 15 minutes web searching you can determine:

    · Henry Weinhard’s is listed as Blitz-Weinhard Brewing Co
    · Blitz-Weinhard Brewing Co is owned by SABMiller
    · Henry Weinhard’s is contract brewed at Full Sail (Oregon) and Miller (Irwindale, CA)

    This marketing crap from MillerCoors is just too irritating!”

  32. jRocco2021

    jRocco2021 Savant (460) Wisconsin Mar 13, 2010 Beer Trader

    I'm not referring to you when I say this but if 15 minutes is too much time for someone to research where their money that they work hours to attain goes then I think you deserve what you get. I've spent hours researching products before. You vote with every dollar you spend and there are countless company's that their mere existence proves people can't be bothered to make informed decisions despite having all the information you would ever need at your finger tips. To me all you did was describe what it takes to find out who makes what. I doubt anyone with even the most basic knowledge would have a hard time figuring any of this out. Also I'm sure people have asked you this before whats the deal with your giant text makes quoting you a pain.

  33. wow, how about "if you like it, you buy it"??? hating a beer that you think taste good because its brewed by what you may consider an "evil" BMC to me is akin to hating Barack Obama because he's black but you support his leftist policies.......
  34. Well said, except I lean libertarian on many things.
  35. Pahn

    Pahn Champion (850) New York Dec 2, 2009 Beer Trader

    thanks. i'm a bit libertarian like this guy, but not libertarian like this guy. if you use old school euro definitions, i'm a libertarian like this guy.

    to remain on topic, i still agree that companies should not obfuscate what goes into their products, or who makes them, etc etc etc (this goes much further than beer). that said, we're all adults living in the real world and should realize that if you want to make responsible choices you need to go out and learn stuff yourself rather than hoping everyone will be honest with you or some government agency will force everyone to tell you what you need to know. nice long sentence there.

    p.s. weyerbacher insanity is still awesome.
  36. Oh, different libertarian ideology I guess.
  37. SammyJaxxxx

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

    You could try, but I doubt you could come up with something stupider.
    Schwantz likes this.
  38. Most people in the rest of the world would regard Obama as to the right of centre.

    Back to the OP, I've long become to realise that the term "craft beer" means very little if anything at all.As a beer site perhaps we ought to concentrate on the beer rather than what sort of place brews it.
    Pahn and Schwantz like this.
  39. I only buy beers from breweries that have never bottled before, just to be sure it's not one of them pesky macros in disguise!
    GreenCoffee likes this.

  40. I'll keep trying so one day you can understand.