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Thrillist: Corporations are swallowing up craft brewers. What's that mean for beer lovers?


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#1 BSLMikeLowe

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Posted 15 October 2016 - 01:47 AM

Thrillist: Corporations are swallowing up craft brewers. What's that mean for beer lovers?

 

The overall gist is that we have likely hit Peak Craft Beer.


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#2 Dupin

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Posted 15 October 2016 - 12:30 PM

Duvel counts?  I wouldn't put them up there with the Anheuser-Busch's of the world, they still actually brew some good beer, as does the companies they bought.  Never been displeased with a Boulevard or an Ommegang.

 

I do try to avoid fake craft brewers, like Goose Island, but if a brewery I like gets bought out by someone and the quality remains I wouldn't stop buying.



#3 BSLMikeLowe

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Posted 15 October 2016 - 01:09 PM

While they have only entered the US recently, Duvel has been buying breweries in Europe for a decade now. And they are publicly traded on the Brussels Exchange. Not as big as AB of course, but definitely one of the bigger fish in the pond.

 

The whole question is whether or not the quality will remain in these beers. It seems to me that when you have to exponentially increase production to meet the distribution demands of the corporate parent, changes are almost inevitable, whether to the brewing process, recipe or quality of ingredients. Goose Island definitely serves as a cautionary tale for these brewers who sell thinking nothing will change except that they are richer. I regularly drink Hop Valley (the Alphadelic, Citrus Mistress and Alpha Centauri). So I definitely intend to pay close attention to what happens to the quality. (Note: My best friend's brother lives in Eugene and knows one of Hop Valley's owners personally. He said the brewery was mostly a huge tax write-off for the owners' other businesses)

 

And then there is the interesting hypothesis at the end; that with the conglomerates starting to buy distributors now too, the craft brewers that haven't been bought out are going to find it harder and harder to get shelf space at the stores, to the degree that eventually craft brewing will mostly be limited to pubs and taphouses that only sell their beer on site.






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