The Craft of Containing Your Craft

If you are in the business of craft beer, and you aren’t yet bottling or canning, then you’ve likely considered it.  Even those operations that had intended to serve only those who visited their breweries have been forced to consider the advantages of containing individual sized portions of their beverages.  The pandemic caused a major drop in business, and big losses for most breweries around the country, and that forced most to think outside the box. The desire to can beer became even more profound as the coronavirus counts continued to climb.

Aluminum Cans… Where are You?

Even before the pandemic, there was a surge starting.  The percentage of the population of legal drinking age seeking craft beers had been steadily climbing.  In 2015, just over a third of the population was apt to choose the craft variety when ordering a brew.  By 2020, just prior to shut down, that number had climbed to nearly 45% of the 21+ population. The industry was seeing a big increase in earnings in that niche, with craft beers claiming over a quarter of the total retail sales, profiting nearly $30 million in 2019. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that manufacturers were making a push to get more of the craft containing cans on supermarket shelves.

With the pandemic factoring in and pushing more breweries to consider how they could boost their sales, and aluminum can manufacturers dealing with their own factory shut downs, the demand was far surpassing the supply.

As one analyst explained it, under normal circumstances, the push for more cans would have been met with increased production and the opening of additional factories, but with coronavirus sweeping the nation, the swell in demand quickly turned to an uncontrollable tsunami, causing countless backorders and out-of-stock banners.

Bring in the Bottles!

The good news is that the aluminum can market is beginning to rebound, but there are still those who are a bit gun shy regarding a move to canning.  Especially for those who are canning in house, the lack of available product could cause a complete halt to operations.  Thus, many are looking to the classic container – the beer bottle.