Are 32 oz growlers a rip-off?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by RenzoD, Mar 2, 2015.

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  1. RenzoD

    RenzoD Initiate (0) Feb 13, 2011 Washington

    I like my little 32 oz growler. It's a good amount of beer for me, but I don't understand how they are priced. For instance I just paid 8 bucks for a Boundary Bay ESB. For a regular sized growler fill I would have paid 11 bucks. What the hell is that all about? Seems to me that it should have been more in the 6 dollars range. I asked and the guy said it's because they don't make much money on

    I am starting to hate taking this thing into get filled because it's always a few bucks more expensive than I am expecting. Why not just half price for half the beer?
  2. AntG21

    AntG21 Initiate (0) Aug 4, 2014 Syria

    Umm it's not the 32oz growler, it's the establishment you're patronizing. Like anything else, if you think it costs too much, don't buy.
    SonnyJay, Sumdeus and ONovoMexicano like this.
  3. Joshjv

    Joshjv Initiate (0) Nov 12, 2013 Michigan

    The beer cost to fill a half growler is less indeed. But the effort and time needed to do so are the same either way. They're already selling the growler beer for less than they sell the beer by the pint. 8 for a half growler does seem high, but I wouldn't expect it to be half the price of a full growler
  4. kristougher

    kristougher Initiate (0) Jun 27, 2013 North Carolina

    I just paid $8.99 for a 32 oz growler of Backwoods Bastard, over the weekend saw a 32 oz Growler of Sexual chocolate for $20. So it all depends on where you are and what the pricing is.
  5. rozzom

    rozzom Meyvn (1,059) Jan 22, 2011 New York

    Probably similar reason that a single isn't usually priced at 1/4 of the 4-pack price.

    Also as far as the store goes, the effort to fill the 32 vs 64 is very similar. So they penalise you heavily for not committing to a larger pour of the beer
  6. Hrodebert

    Hrodebert Aspirant (273) Sep 2, 2013 Michigan

    Growlers are usually a rip-off.
    Some people don't mind.
  7. bluehende

    bluehende Poo-Bah (2,440) Dec 10, 2010 Delaware

    The local place I fill my 32 oz is almost always half the price of 64. There is sometimes a 50 cent surcharge. I agree with many that there probably should be a slight premium on the 32. I also do not need 64 oz very often so do appreciate my local store and do a lot of business with them.
  8. AntG21

    AntG21 Initiate (0) Aug 4, 2014 Syria

    There are 165 bottles (12oz) of beer in a keg. So, a single bottle should cost 1/165 the price of the keg. I should paying about $0.60-$2.00 max for a beer.
    jcb7472, TMoney2591 and Joshjv like this.
  9. oso4life

    oso4life Initiate (0) May 22, 2014 Florida

    I have to purchase 32oz since it's illegal to sell 64oz in Florida
  10. Andrew3366

    Andrew3366 Initiate (63) Dec 13, 2012 Illinois

    Growlers are almost always priced per ounce less than a tap room pint. In fact, if brewery tap rooms sold only growlers and no pints, they would make far less money, and wind up having to charge much more for the growler.
    Wayne17 likes this.
  11. Iamjeff6

    Iamjeff6 Initiate (0) Sep 9, 2013 Virginia

    What I have come to love lately are 32 oz crowlers, only down side is you need to drink it all once opened. But at the price point most places charge for the fills its totally worth it.
    Tilley4 and saint0r like this.
  12. SerialTicker

    SerialTicker Initiate (0) Jun 18, 2012 Michigan

    I prefer 32oz growlers as well, I got a couple this past weekend. 32oz of Hopslam was an insane $23 ... of course, it also tasted insane.

    Anyway, as with most things, you get more for your money when you buy in bulk. At the place I went to, you only save a couple bucks when you get a 64oz growler.
  13. drtth

    drtth Initiate (0) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    If you take up home brewing, it won't be too many batches before you start to hit that target.
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  14. TheOneTC

    TheOneTC Initiate (182) Aug 23, 2013 Massachusetts

    You're looking at it wrong. It's not that 32s are more expensive, it's that 64s are a better deal. It's like buying anything in bulk, quantity lowers the price per unit. If you bought a pint of said beer, it'd probably be $5-6, which would then make your 32oz growler the better option.
  15. Tanktizzo

    Tanktizzo Initiate (0) May 19, 2014 Illinois

    Don't you mean Howler?
    Bitterbill and jminch like this.
  16. BBThunderbolt

    BBThunderbolt Poo-Bah (9,997) Sep 24, 2007 Kiribati
    Society Trader

    @RenzoD , FWIW at the brewery 32oz fills of BB ESB are $5.50 +tax. 64oz fills are $9.75 + tax. I'd say that you're getting hosed by the place you bought it.
  17. TheeWalrusHunter

    TheeWalrusHunter Initiate (194) Aug 23, 2013 Oregon

    That is balls expensive. Don't buy from them.

    I fill my 32 oz in the $4 to $8 range.
    Bitterbill likes this.
  18. Wayne17

    Wayne17 Zealot (580) Jan 8, 2013 Texas

    I'm confused on exactly what you are asking OP. Could you clarify a little? You paid $8 for a 32oz fill of Boundary Bay ESB? and what is "regular size" that you are upset about? Is "regular size" 64oz? With growlers at my establishment you are paying based on serving size. If our price is $5 per pint, we offer 32oz fills at $8 (a savings of $1.50 per pint), and 64oz fills at $13 (a savings of $1.75 per pint). So by our pricing if you were sitting at the bar you'd be paying $10 for 2 pints, but we want to move the beer out, encourage people not to get drunk in our establishment and enjoy their fine liquid at home and therefore give volume discounts (just like many other retail establishments: the more you buy, the better the price)
  19. CheapHysterics

    CheapHysterics Initiate (0) Apr 1, 2009 Pennsylvania

    I don't think the OP suggested it should cost exactly half what a large growler does, just that it shouldn't be that much more. Comparing kegs to bottles isn't even a meaningful comparison.
    hikanteki likes this.
  20. RenzoD

    RenzoD Initiate (0) Feb 13, 2011 Washington

    Damn. That's about the only answer I needed I guess haha
  21. Wayne17

    Wayne17 Zealot (580) Jan 8, 2013 Texas

    Getting something directly from the source will always be less of course.
  22. BBThunderbolt

    BBThunderbolt Poo-Bah (9,997) Sep 24, 2007 Kiribati
    Society Trader

    Out of curiosity, where did this fill take place? If you don't want post in the thread, shoot me a message.
  23. BeerPilgrim11

    BeerPilgrim11 Initiate (0) Mar 2, 2011 New Hampshire

    It seems in America the more you buy, the better the deal. Right or wrong most breweries follow this concept. I don't mind the pricing difference, the fact that I know I'm drinking the freshest beer possible and supporting my local artisan makes my world more satisfying.

    On a side note though the exploitation of the demand for hops like Mosaic have become absurd.
  24. CheapHysterics

    CheapHysterics Initiate (0) Apr 1, 2009 Pennsylvania

    Isn't a pint 16 oz? So 32 oz for 8$ would be only saving 1$ per pint? If you actually take off 1.50 per pint then it would be 7$, which seems like a much fairer price.
  25. BBThunderbolt

    BBThunderbolt Poo-Bah (9,997) Sep 24, 2007 Kiribati
    Society Trader

    Not always true. There are several places here in town where you can get BB beer cheaper than at the brewery. The brewery doesn't like to compete with their accounts. If the brewery underprices their accounts, there's no reason for the accounts to carry the breweries beer.
  26. rozzom

    rozzom Meyvn (1,059) Jan 22, 2011 New York

    Really? In NYC and the surrounding area (in my experience at least), breweries don't offer the most competitive prices for growlers of their beer (which is understandable)
    BBThunderbolt likes this.
  27. mmmbeerNY

    mmmbeerNY Devotee (486) Mar 5, 2014 New York

    place by me where I bought my 32oz growler has good prices and is about 1/2 cost of 64oz so for me a 32oz is perfect size a lot of the time .....even if 64oz is slightly better price/oz sometimes that might be wasted if you want fresh beer
  28. miketd

    miketd Initiate (0) Mar 2, 2006 Ohio

    I only fill them if it's half price of a full growler, or at most a dollar more.
    mwa423 likes this.
  29. Phocion

    Phocion Initiate (0) Aug 5, 2005 Minnesota

    I typically pay half the cost of a 64 ounce growler plus an extra buck to account for waste. Seems fair.
    sharpski likes this.
  30. jesskidden

    jesskidden Poo-Bah (2,531) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    Unless [in most cases], you are buying a 22 oz. "bomber" of beer :grinning:
  31. KingforaDay

    KingforaDay Crusader (761) Aug 5, 2010 New Jersey

    Part of the problem is the runoff/foam/waste involved in filling growlers. You could get 4-5 ounces (or more) of wasted beer for every fill and the waste is the same (or can even be more due to smaller opening at top) for 32oz growlers as it is for 64oz., so the bar or brewery filling 2 small growlers can be losing 8-10 oz. of beer (on 2 -32 oz fills) as opposed to 4-5 oz. loss for the same 64 oz. going into a big growler. If they are filling a lot of growlers, that waste can add up and the cost needs to be made up somehow. So in the end it's us who will pay the price.
    #31 KingforaDay, Mar 2, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2015
  32. derftron

    derftron Devotee (450) Feb 8, 2012 Oregon

    my local whole foods had 32oz growlers priced at $6 for over a year. finally "corporate" took notice and made them charge $8. it was nice while it lasted.
  33. LehighAce06

    LehighAce06 Champion (828) Jul 31, 2010 Pennsylvania

    Most of the growlers I buy are from Tired Hands or Forest & Main, and are in the $10-14 range for a 32oz fill, whereas 64oz is around $20-24. Would I get a better volume discount for the larger growler? Sure, but odds are I wouldn't drink a large portion of it because it would lose too much carbonation.

    32oz is the perfect size for me as I can get through one in a single sitting and not worry about waste.
  34. Jstonerock24

    Jstonerock24 Initiate (0) Sep 4, 2014 Ohio

    No they are great because you get 2 pints. Which is perfect. Honestly I wouldn't want full growler as I feel I have to drink it so fast. I like to switch it up when drinking good beer. A 64oz growler is great for a party or bottle share but not for personal use IMO.
    SerialTicker likes this.
  35. mwa423

    mwa423 Initiate (0) Nov 7, 2007 Ohio

    This is the usual growler idiocy that really grinds my gears (as a guy who does beer pricing for a living). Several people have mentioned how "it takes the same amount of time to fill a 32 vs. 64 oz". Bull. Regardless, the additional time an employee spends as a loss assumes he/she would be doing something productive.

    There's no additional packaging cost to the store (since in my example, I assume they're filling the customer's growler), so really, you should only be paying for 32 oz of liquid or 64 oz of liquid. I don't have a problem with a small upcharge to cover additional waste or to encourage customers to trade up to a full 64 oz, but paying 72% of the price for 50% of the liquid is absurd.

    As a side note, I looked up the prices of Boundary Bay packages in...a large grocery store in OP's state and Boundary Bay bombers go from $4.29-$4.49 (give or take, and yes I didn't see an ESB in there, but I'm not going to bother to do the research to see if it's actually packaged then search through hundreds of stores to find where it might be sold).

    So, the 64 oz growler for $11 is a decent deal (17 cents per oz), at $4.49, a bomber is .20 cents per oz and this 32 oz fill is .25 cents per oz. A growler should never be more expensive per oz than the same beer packaged!

    DrinktotheDead and Hrodebert like this.
  36. otispdriftwood

    otispdriftwood Initiate (0) Dec 9, 2011 Colorado

    Although I have both 64 oz. & 32 oz. growlers I prefer the 32 oz. size if I'm going to either drink alone at home or be the only one drinking from it if I take it somewhere. The 64 oz. is used for sharing. Besides, a 32 oz. growler takes me back to the days when we each bought a personal quart of Schaefer.

    As far as pricing for a 32 oz. growler, I usually pay 1/2 the cost of the 64 oz. plus $1 - so if a 64 oz. is $14, $8 is a fair price for the 32 oz. There have been a few times that I've gotten 2 - 32 oz. growlers filled for the 64 oz. price, either at a place that only has 64 oz. pricing or my regular place since I always tip on growler fills. Personal experience - it always pays to tip.
    Bitterbill likes this.
  37. reverseapachemaster

    reverseapachemaster Initiate (182) Sep 21, 2012 Texas

    The 64oz. is sold at a volume discount. I bet a pint at the same place for the same beer would be more than half of the cost of the 32oz. filll.
  38. mwa423

    mwa423 Initiate (0) Nov 7, 2007 Ohio

    ...Almost everywhere I'm aware of that sells growlers and pints sells pints for on premise consumption and growlers for off premise consumption. In fact, many will have a sign saying "growlers for take out only" or something similar. Your example is apples and oranges.
  39. 31Sam13

    31Sam13 Initiate (0) Sep 29, 2014 New Hampshire

  40. disGRUNTled

    disGRUNTled Initiate (148) Sep 21, 2013 Florida

    I paid 20 $ for the sexual chocolate growlers got 2 of them actually thought it was a deal bombers were 15 at the release and around 19$ when they hit distro in my area, I am stationed in Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville there is 2 craft beer stores near me plus lowes food but the prices here for craft beer in general are more expensive than say the triangle area or Greensboro.
    #40 disGRUNTled, Mar 2, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2015
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