When it comes to running a brewery, staying up to date with industry trends is not just important—it can be a lifeline for survival. Over the past few years, we've witnessed a notable number of brewers having to scale back operations and many even having to close their doors permanently. As with any business, there are always factors that can affect sales that are out of anyone’s control, however, breweries that remain flexible and adapt to the changing landscape will stand a better chance at not only weathering the storm but thriving in a challenging market. In this blog post, we delve into the brewing trends crucial for professional brewers to consider in 2024.
Diversify, Diversify, Diversify
Beer is great. And as a brewer, you may be hesitant to stray away from the tried and true standby of a good brew. In today’s changing market, however, diversifying what you’re offering at your brewery may be inevitable.
According to this article from Hop Culture, Brewers Association Chief Economist Bart Watson reported that “the number one reason why people say they’re drinking less craft isn’t because they’re watching their waistline or watching their wallet, it’s because they are drinking more of some other type of beverage alcohol.”
The younger generation seems to be more and more excited by seltzers and non-carbonated beverages that avoid the bloat. Sales of items like alcoholic water and hard teas are booming and as a brewer, it may be vital to capitalize on this expanding market.
According to Bump Williams Consulting (BWC), hard tea expanded from 80 brands in 2020 to almost 150 in 2023, and this number is only set to go up in 2024.
As a brewer or brewery owner, expanding the options at your brewery and appealing to a changing demographic could be the difference between success and failure.
Say Yes to N/A
Consumer preferences are shifting towards healthier lifestyle choices, and this is reflected in their beverage choices.
According to a survey from ncsolutions.com, over 41% of consumers are trying to drink less – an increase of 7 percentage points from 2023. For Gen Z, 61% percent plan to drink less in 2024, and 49% of millennials are also following suit – an increase of 26% from those surveyed a year before. By offering a selection of high-quality non-alcoholic beers, breweries can meet this demand and cater to a broader customer base.
To capture the younger generation of brewery goers, it may be critical to explore N/A options at your brewery as a more health-conscious option.
Bring the Community Together
As consumers increasingly prioritize local experiences, breweries that connect with their communities will continue to thrive. Collaborations with local businesses, the use of local ingredients, and exclusive regional releases create a sense of belonging and support.
One simple way to show support for the community is by hosting community events at your brewery. In a post-pandemic world, festivals, events, and live music are all in full swing and if you have space in your brewery, this could be a great way to generate business and bring members of the community together.
Not only do events present an opportunity to diversify revenue streams beyond regular beer sales with ticketed events, merchandise sales, and collaborations with local vendors, but they also offer an opportunity to build relationships. Collaborating with local businesses for events creates a symbiotic relationship that benefits everyone involved. Whether it's partnering with a nearby food truck, local artists, or musicians, these collaborations not only enhance the event experience but also strengthen ties within the local business community.
Work Together with other Brewers
As brewers, we all have the same overall goal: to bring great beer into the world and to spread more “cheers!”
So in a market that is widely struggling, why not work together?
As breweries face increasing economic pressures, one strategy gaining traction is the consolidation of resources. When breweries come together to share resources, expertise, and facilities, everybody wins.
The financial burden of operating a brewery independently can be significant. Consolidating resources allows breweries to share the costs of raw materials, equipment, and facilities, leading to significant economic efficiencies. By pooling resources, breweries can access state-of-the-art equipment and ingredients that might have been financially out of reach on an individual basis.
Collaboration can also help brewers create new connections in the community. Sharing production facilities and logistics networks can lead to streamlined operations, reducing overhead costs and increasing overall efficiency. This, in turn, allows breweries to focus on what they do best – brewing exceptional beer – without being bogged down by logistical challenges.
As the old saying goes, “Teamwork makes the dream work.” So why not partner up with someone who has a similar passion for brewing and make some awesome beer?
Harnessing the Power of Technology for Efficiency
Technology has emerged as a critical factor in the survival of breweries during challenging times. Automation, data analytics, inventory management, and more can help streamline operations, reduce costs, and enhance quality control.
Beer30 brewery software offers brewers a single source of truth where brewers can run their brewery operations, keep track of data, manage team workflow, and drive efficiency and profitability.
Not only does the software help reduce the stress of running a brewery by automating processes and keeping accurate records of everything you need, but it can also save you time, money, and labor by streamlining your operations.
To see all the ways that brewery software like Beer30 can help your brewery, explore the full list of features on our Bundles and Pricing Page.
Or to see how real Beer30 customers have saved thousands of dollars, check out some of our case studies here.
Staying current with brewing trends isn't merely a choice—it's a vital strategy for survival. The past years have shown us that those who embrace innovation, diversity, community, and technology position themselves for success even in challenging times. In the dynamic world of brewing, adaptability and foresight are the keys to avoiding the fate that has befallen others.
If you’re interested in learning more about Beer30 software, book a demo to talk to an account representative and see if our brewery software is a good fit for your brewing needs.
Cheers to a thriving 2024!