This one was a belly full of LOL’s for me. The “big” guys have apparently figured things out, by making “fake” craft beers and “super-premium” brands. Reading between the lines, they even have plans for some “cross-bred” brands, which may pretty much be the same beer in different packaging, in an effort to capture sales.
I dunno. You be the judge. The “first uptick” since 2008 could be due to any number of factors, not the least of which could be the “improved economy,” which in and of itself is debatable (particularly in a naueseating election year….had enough political ads yet?), but I would think that a “bad economy” would lend itself to consumption of cheaper beer – yet it’s the more expensive craft brands that have been growing and continue to grow.
Bottom line, this is oversimplification of a much more complex issue. While there’s growth for these major brands, my feeling is that most of it is in Asia and other “new” markets…not the U.S., where they are finding their tactics and products challenged on a regular basis.
On the bright side, it’s nice of the big guys to “educate” consumers as to the joys of “non-yellow fizzy” beer. Let’s face it…a “black” beer from ABInBev (Michelob, Busch, Rolling Rock, etc.) is going to immediately get more shelf space, more tap handles and more advertising than almost any craft beer…and if commercial beer drinkers are willing to try it – and not be put off – they’ll soon use that as a gateway to try “real” craft beer, much like Sam Adams, Killians and Leini’s have done for years.