Would it be better if there was an after market for beer?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by koflaherty, Jan 24, 2013.

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  1. koflaherty

    koflaherty Initiate (194) Nov 11, 2009 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    It's been about 4 months since eBay removed listings for collectable beer bottles that still contained beer and although there are still some listings there and other places (Craigslist, etc) that go under the radar basically selling beer between third parties is gone. At the time, there were a lot of heated threads about whether eBay sales being terrible for the BA community or not.

    So 4 months later, has it really made any difference? Are releases less crazy, is there less muling, less bad behavior? For my part I haven't really noticed it, but I don't go to a lot of releases. Would we be better off if there was a legal alternative to buying from a brewery or through the distribution channel?
  2. LivingWeapon

    LivingWeapon Initiate (0) Oct 29, 2012 Illinois

    I did not like that people sold beer on eBay, so I am glad they cracked down on it. I remember seeing Zombie Dust on there for $100 or more a case, that stuff is $35 a case at the brewery. If you want a beer you cant get in your area this site is very useful, because you just trade and avoid some outrageous mark up like they were doing on eBay.
  3. SammyJaxxxx

    SammyJaxxxx Poo-Bah (1,800) Feb 23, 2012 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    There is an aftermarket. It just isn't as public as ebay
  4. Agold

    Agold Defender (641) Mar 13, 2010 Pennsylvania

    As most people who thought about this practice and the direction of craft beer could have predicted, there has been no noticeable change in releases, availability, behavior, etc.
    Bung likes this.
  5. LiquidCourage

    LiquidCourage Initiate (156) Nov 1, 2012 Rhode Island
    Beer Trader

    I liked having the option on ebay. I've traded before, but its very difficult to trade for black tuesday, cbs, etc... If you don't have what the person wants.
    ThisWangsChung, Bung, black13 and 4 others like this.
  6. Dtapeski

    Dtapeski Initiate (36) Oct 26, 2012 Colorado

    First rule of beer aftermarket is you don't talk about beer aftermarket.
    jgluck, JrGtr, rather and 10 others like this.
  7. tjensen3618

    tjensen3618 Initiate (0) Mar 23, 2008 California

    Cellaring was, and still is a bigger problem IMO.
    jgluck, KhakCane, Bung and 1 other person like this.
  8. koflaherty

    koflaherty Initiate (194) Nov 11, 2009 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

    Can you elaborate? Do you mean private sales between folks or some sort of clearing house? I'm sure there are private sales, but anything widespread would be news to me.
  9. mcritchi

    mcritchi Initiate (0) Jan 13, 2010 Minnesota

    How do you view cellaring as a problem? I'm asking honestly, not trolling.

    Do you say this because (conceptually) cellaring creates additional demand (i.e. beers to cellar, not just consume immediately) on limited product?
    tjensen3618 likes this.
  10. e30todamax

    e30todamax Initiate (0) Oct 5, 2012 Virginia

    brewbetter likes this.
  11. tjensen3618

    tjensen3618 Initiate (0) Mar 23, 2008 California

    Yes, cellaring geeks/hoarders often buy 2x-3x more beer than they drink before the next release of said beer.
  12. SammyJaxxxx

    SammyJaxxxx Poo-Bah (1,800) Feb 23, 2012 New Jersey
    Beer Trader

  13. Jeffo

    Jeffo Poo-Bah (2,723) Sep 7, 2008 Netherlands

    And then they buy 2x-3x more beer than they drink again to pile on top of last year's hoard. Repeat...
    Bung likes this.
  14. Hanzo

    Hanzo Initiate (0) Feb 27, 2012 Virginia

    Can you imagine the change in the craft beer community if people only bought beer they were going to consume in a timely manner?
    jgluck and Bung like this.
  15. GhettoFabulous

    GhettoFabulous Initiate (191) May 29, 2010 California

    The effect of eBay on the scarcity of limited beers was always overstated. Only a small fraction of special releases ended up there.

    In fact, it could be argued that beeradvocate - where contless people intentionally buy extras of limited beers with the intention of using them as currency in the trading forums - is more of an aftermarket than eBay, and that this dynamic is contributing more to the oversized demand of special releases than eBay ever did.

    The righteous indignation against eBay was somewhat comical, since at least some of the people decrying its profiteering have been guilty of trading a scarce beer for well over $4$ in return at some point.
    JavaNoire, mythaeus, jgluck and 27 others like this.
  16. Dtapeski

    Dtapeski Initiate (36) Oct 26, 2012 Colorado

    Honestly, I think most people who drink craft buy to consume immediately. Being on this forum we are surrounded by people who think/act similarly, but the majority of craft drinkers probably don't have cellars/2nd/3rd fridges....
  17. Mavajo

    Mavajo Zealot (572) Feb 10, 2007 Georgia


    I'm still pissed that eBay pulled beer auctions. It was such a convenient way to score the occasional rare beer.
  18. sacrelicio

    sacrelicio Initiate (0) Feb 15, 2005 Minnesota

    People talk about a craft beer bubble bursting soon, but I think what we are really starting to see is a beer cellaring/hoarding bubble, and I see signs of it popping.
  19. ljkeats

    ljkeats Devotee (405) Jun 27, 2007 Massachusetts
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    How about asking people to sell them for what they (roughly) paid for them?
    So many $20 beers looking to get +$100....
  20. LeRose

    LeRose Meyvn (1,183) Nov 24, 2011 Massachusetts
    Supporter Subscriber

    Hoarders gotta hoard, tickers gotta tick. Somewhere in the middle are those of us who just like to enjoy different beers by actually drinking them. But as long as people are willing to pay there will be an "after" market.

    I have maybe twenty bottles in the house right now and I think even that is too much sometimes. The concept of just buying a shit ton of a beer and just holding on to it escapes me.
  21. SpeedwayJim

    SpeedwayJim Poo-Bah (2,292) Jun 19, 2009 New York
    Beer Trader

    I agree with you 100%. And the BA world would be infinitely better if people passed on their beers at cost. However, you, I and likely 99% of this website (and people in this country in general) know that that's not how America works... and what's more, we (America and Americans) wouldn't be where we were if that WAS how it worked.\

    We can keep dreaming the dream... but that doesn't mean its ever gonna come true.
    otispdriftwood likes this.
  22. rmalinowski4

    rmalinowski4 Disciple (329) Oct 22, 2010 Illinois
    Beer Trader

    I think the true test of how this will affect beer releases will be KBS and Dark Lord Day. There were tons of people at both events there just to ebay the beers.
  23. jasonmason

    jasonmason Initiate (171) Oct 6, 2004 California

    I'd like to think so, but I'm not really sure. While I think diminished accessibility to an aftermarket may have limit the ridiculous 'investment' purchasing/hoarding that has gone on, I still think we're not at the pop yet (if we ever get there). I do think some sort of aftermarket will always exist, and that's fine; ebay just kind of threw things out of whack for a while, and we're starting to readjust.

    I do agree that the wholesale ignorance of the 'community' on the concept of cellaring is going to bite a lot of people in the ass at some point. Which, schadenfreude being what it is, will make me chuckle.
  24. Immortale25

    Immortale25 Poo-Bah (3,021) May 13, 2011 North Carolina
    Beer Trader

    I really wish I hadn't followed your link. Not that I will buy any of those beers or necessarily even be tempted to buy any, but there are just some things I'd be better off not seeing...
  25. Sarlacc83

    Sarlacc83 Crusader (752) Mar 2, 2008 Oregon
    Beer Trader

    eBay was a symptom and not a cause.
  26. rowingbrewer

    rowingbrewer Champion (849) May 28, 2010 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    While at zwanze day 2011 I was talking to several people around me at the bar and one of the guys mentioned cellaring, he asked if i had any "Rare" beers. i mentioned i had kate, and he offered to buy it of me for more than $100. these things happen
  27. beerborn

    beerborn Initiate (0) Jan 22, 2012 Georgia

    The prices on here though are mad ridiculous..
  28. gueuzegeek

    gueuzegeek Initiate (0) Aug 11, 2003 New Jersey

    Undoubtedly, there will always be an after-market, even if it is just among friends, however, I really think the ebay version does cause prices to increase and SOME breweries to feel the pinch to have a highly sought-after beer rather than just brew great more traditional session ales. To me, there is nothing like a good solid German Pils or American Pale Ale, and neither of those tend to be after-marketable. As a note, I have NEVER sold any of my beer, and only do in-person beer trades.
  29. codysjb

    codysjb Devotee (423) Jun 16, 2010 Prince Edward Island (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    Seemingly the craft beer market/fad/scene can only go two ways, bigger or smaller.

    The market gets bigger. Seems likely since the new wave of college kids seem to be drinking better beer. Yes I know that a ton of college kids still drink cheap swill (I just graduated from undergrad 8 months ago, I am more than aware of the popularity of BMC), but many more people are drinking Sam Adams or better which to me indicates that they are starting to get into craft. Ten years ago grad students were NOT drinking craft beer, now I see many grad students drinking exclusively craft beer. If this continues, the market will grow and larger craft breweries will serve a much larger audience (I'm talking 40 - 50 percent market share as opposed to the 15% rough estimate it is now). If this happens some kind of ebay/beer auction site will spring up. It seems only logical that is the demand is there and growing and people are becoming more educated about beer then it will spring up.

    If the bubble pops, then craft could theoretically go back to the dark ages/middle ages/90's and many people will just stop caring about craft beer. You won't have as many people joining BA if there is a smaller market.
  30. MacNCheese

    MacNCheese Initiate (0) Dec 10, 2011 California

    The aftermarket for my beer is the toilet. Twas a good beer *flush*. Remember to shake 3 times.
  31. BradStokley

    BradStokley Disciple (347) Jan 19, 2013 Maryland
    Beer Trader

    I bought some Westys on Craigslist from a guy who worked at a beer store where it was sold (yes, I do know where he lives and works so I'm fairly confident it's not piss). I don't mind the aftermarket...yet.
  32. LiquidCourage

    LiquidCourage Initiate (156) Nov 1, 2012 Rhode Island
    Beer Trader


    Ebay had 40 to 50 auctions every few days. There are at least 50 ISO posts per DAY on Beeradvocate.

    Beer scalpers didn't even buy up 1% of most beer releases. There are many people on this site who have hundreds and hundreds of beers in their cellar that they probably will never end up drinking. For the record I have no problem with this.

    More importantly, I have no problem with people selling their beer. No one makes you go to *.com and pay $85 for a Black Tuesday. However, living on the east coast its nice to have an option available to get the beer as opposed to never having a chance to get it.
  33. LivingWeapon

    LivingWeapon Initiate (0) Oct 29, 2012 Illinois

    Yeah but thats why you make trades on BA with people. That way everyone can try the beers they want and not overpay for them.

    I can come up with a few situation were selling beer to someone could be the only way for someone to get to try the beer thats not in their area, (for example: they have no good beers in their area that anyone would want in a trade) but it just seems unacceptable I guess for people to sell the beers 3,4,5 or more times than what they actually go for. But then again its YOUR beer, I guess you can do what you want with it and how you want to (I just wouldnt drain someones wallet, Id just take the money for what the beer cost, plus shipping and supplies, and maybe just maybe a few bucks for my trouble, maybe). For now I am sticking with even trades.

    And thats the end of my rant. Im bored lol. This is just my opinion so if you feel differently I dont care so neither should you.
  34. BeastLU

    BeastLU Disciple (326) Dec 20, 2012 Virginia

    When I want to do charity work I help out at the local food bank or animal shelter, not search for rare beers then essentially give them to you.

    Wouldn't it be nice if the Breweries, Distributors, or Retailers sold there beer at cost? Yeah that would be sweet until you had to home brew anything you drank because business ceased to exist...
    CORKSCREWFISH likes this.
  35. Providence

    Providence Initiate (0) Feb 24, 2010 Rhode Island

    Seriously. I just looked at the site, you gotta be nuts to spend that for a brew.
  36. cbeer88

    cbeer88 Crusader (719) Sep 5, 2007 Massachusetts

    It's too early to tell, you really need to give it a year I think to see releases cycle. Also the growth of craft (both bottle volume and consumers) kind of clouds the analysis.

    I will say though, I've already seen two huge examples around here - Utopias and BCBS. Again, there are lots of variables at play, but with Utopias alone there was one jackhole in MA that used to sell dozens of them on Ebay who scoured the tiniest liquor stores for bottles.

    Will it make a huge difference in the long run? I don't know - but at worst it is net neutral, and potentially a good thing.

    The most interesting negative effect I've seen (which again is difficult to parse out), is the trading forums have become a complete shit show in the last 6 months. I have to wonder at some level if Ebayers just turned to trading.
  37. ShogoKawada

    ShogoKawada Meyvn (1,247) May 31, 2009 Pennsylvania

    if you concern yourself with 1% of 1% of the beer on the market, it might have a difference.

    I can't tell, I'm off enjoying all this other awesome beer.
  38. basickness

    basickness Aspirant (206) Apr 20, 2013 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    economics... supply/demand etc... also, bottles of wine sell for more than these beers are going for. just goes to show what the new wave is
  39. otispdriftwood

    otispdriftwood Defender (637) Dec 9, 2011 Colorado
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    Many breweries would go out of business.
  40. otispdriftwood

    otispdriftwood Defender (637) Dec 9, 2011 Colorado
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    That's just your opinion. I would suggest a poll about the cellars/2nd/3rd fridges.
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