Craft beers gain in popularity
CHICAGO — According to consumer research firm Mintel, more beer drinkers are reaching for domestically made craft beers over imported brews.
While just 13% of beer drinkers said they prefer domestic craft or microbrew beers (compared with 43% for domestic and 22% for imported), 59% said they like to try them and 51% would try more craft or microbrew beers if they knew more about them.
"Craft beers have increased in popularity in the past five years and [have] enjoyed a boost in their consumer base," said Garima Goel Lal, senior analyst at Mintel. "Craft beer is most popular with the 25- [to] 34-year-old crowd, so manufacturers would be wise to target this demographic and educate them more about artisan beers."
However, price is a deterrent for some drinkers when it comes to trying or purchasing craft beers; 41% of drinkers only enjoy craft/microbrew beers as a treat because they are expensive. Meanwhile, 29% reported drinking less craft beer than they did a year ago because of the price. But the market still shows resilience, as 29% of consumers who reported drinking more beer than they did a year ago said they are drinking more craft/microbrew beer as an affordable luxury.
"The recession hit many industries hard, and the beer market was no exception," Lal noted. "The good news is, it appears that the influence of the recession is becoming less pronounced on the beer market in terms of losing volume. The number of beer drinkers who are drinking less beer has decreased since 2009."
Also worth noting in the research:
- 63% of beer drinkers prefer their beer in a bottle;
- 20% prefer to drink their beer from a can;
- 8% prefer draft beer served from a large container (e.g., a growler); and
- Just 2% prefer a keg.