November 2021

The new business of business is … politics Digital platforms ǀ In today’s climate, political issues – from public health to energy supplies and road planning – have become hotly contested. Stakeholder groups are dragging business leaders into debates that have little to do with their commerce. Breweries too have entered into the fray, willingly… Continue reading November 2021

October 2021

When it comes to raising prices, brewers in many parts of the world have long played a game of “who blinks first, loses”. This is to say, you don’t put them up unless somebody else does, or you’ll be too expensive amid the competition and your sales will decline. Given rising inflation, price increases for… Continue reading October 2021

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October 2021

Beyond coronavirus: the future of supply chains From bottle and can shortages to shipping delays and soaring commodity costs, the pandemic has strained brewers’ global supply chains. Amid ongoing geopolitical tensions and a toughening of European legislation, brewers will need their ingenuity to adapt their supply chains in favour of greater localism. Even before the… Continue reading October 2021

September 2021

It sent shockwaves around the industry when Australia’s number two brewer Lion announced it has acquired 100 percent of the Fermentum Group, which owns one of the country’s largest and most staunchly independent craft brewers, Stone & Wood, for an estimated USD 370 million. The group is estimated to control about 1 percent (200,000 hl)… Continue reading September 2021

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August 2021

Carlsberg in court again over collusion in German beer market. This is turning into a never-ending story. On 27 August 2021, Carlsberg will be dragged to court again over price fixing which occurred between 2006 and 2008. The Federal Cartel Office, in early 2014, imposed fines totalling EUR 338 million (USD 450 million) on several… Continue reading August 2021

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August 2021

Tulips and beer Dutch craft beer ǀ What on earth have tulips got to do with beer? Very little it seems. Except perhaps for tulip shaped beer glasses. But there is one country in this world where tulips can serve as a metaphor for the phenomenal rise of craft breweries. Cross your heart: what do… Continue reading August 2021

July 2021

There seems to be no end to the hard seltzer saga. In the UK, BrewDog et al were slammed by the watchdog over misleading hard seltzer claims The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), on 7 July, took objections to hard seltzer ads which appeared between December 2020 and January 2021, including BrewDog’s Clean & Press range,… Continue reading July 2021

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June 2021

USA – Jim Koch of Boston Beer has high hopes for hard seltzers It was kind of unsettling to hear Jim Koch, the founder of Boston Beer, only talk about hard seltzers at the US industry gathering, the Beverage Forum, which was held in May. Is beer on the way out, and its continued decline… Continue reading June 2021

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April 2021

The power of the narrative Narratives help us make sense of the world and ourselves. Take globalisation. It was presented to us as an inevitable process, forging global champions in its wake. In the brewing industry, the narrative of “biggest is best” was countered by the craft brewers’ own narrative, which was modelled on the… Continue reading April 2021

April 2021

USA – Constellation takes impairment charge on Mexicali brewery Constellation Brands is finding itself in an awkward situation with no easy way out. In March 2020, Mexicali residents, in a referendum, rejected the completion of the 10 million hl brewery at a cost of more than USD 1 billion, which Constellation had already partly built.… Continue reading April 2021

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