Dear Client: While it is admittedly “way too early to form definitive conclusions about how Hard Seltzers and other BEYOND BEER styles will perform on draft in 2020,” the folks at BeerBoard provided some early insights into how the new category is performing on tap so far (with only two major national brands available on … Continue reading “What’s the Deal with Seltzer on Tap?”

Dear Client: A huge twist in CornGate. Anheuser-Busch has filed a counterclaim today that asserts several civil claims against MillerCoors, mainly accusing MillerCoors of coming into possession of their trade secrets, including recipes for Bud Light and Michelob Ultra. A-B claims in today’s filing that MillerCoors obtained this information through one of its brewers at … Continue reading “A-B Accuses MillerCoors of Trade Secret Meddling in CornGate Counterclaim”

Dear Client: With about 23 locations across Ohio, Winking Lizard Tavern sports bar (and its more upscale, whiskey-oriented Lizardville concept) go through a lot of draft beer.  BBD caught up with director of operations John Lane to explore some business highlights and trends, right before his annual supplier meeting.  We were surprised at some of … Continue reading “Top Ohio On-Premise Chain Looks to Bud Light, Modelo, Seltzer to Boost Beer”

Dear Client: In our conversation with Marcelo “Mika” Michaelis last week, the chief of A-B’s Brewer’s Collective spilled the beans that a hard seltzer from his bunch of brewers was imminent.  Mika didn’t share what brewery the seltzer would belong to, but we threw out some guesses around the BBD office and came to the … Continue reading “First Look at Maha, A-B’s New Better for You Business”

Dear Client: As we reported yesterday, Boston Beer Co. is reformulating their 13 Truly Hard Seltzer flavors, to be more “crisp” and “refreshing.” The other headline: They’re also rolling out Truly Lemonade Hard Seltzer flavors early next year.  But back to that reformulation: The retooled Truly has a stronger flavor, with a more “fruit-forward” aroma … Continue reading “Truly to Reformulate”

Dear Client: CBD DRINKS COMING TO CANADA THIS YEAR, STILL WORKING ON THC Cannabis-infused drinks are near from the world’s largest brewer. Quick refresher: Late last year, A-B InBev waded into the cannabis trade by forming a research partnership with Canadian cannabis company Tilray. The partnership gave way to a joint venture between ABI’s Labatt … Continue reading “Latest on ABI’s Canadian Cannabis Venture”

Dear Client: One of the largest “craft” brewers, depending on your definition, is Anheuser-Busch’s Brewers Collective, with roughly a dozen craft franchises. Year to date in IRI, Brewers Collective’s share of craft is 7.58.  And indeed, recent innovations like Karbach’s Crawford Bock and Golden Road’s Mango Cart are not only helping the total Collective grow … Continue reading “A-B’s Giant Craft Unit Making Big Bets”

Dear Client: At Constellation’s Wine & Spirit Investor Day presentation this week in Napa, California, CMO Jim Sabia shared how they’re using big CPG beer tactics for their wine and spirits portfolio.  That part of Constellation’s business just had a rough showing in last week’s earnings. Wine and spirits net sales were down almost 9%, … Continue reading “Woodbridge Has an MLB Deal, and Other Ways STZ is Leveraging Beer Insights for Wine & Spirits”

Dear Client: Your editor was in Austin this past weekend living like the true Millennial he is.  On Saturday I watched the Longhorns game at a few different bars on West 6th, and on Sunday I ventured out to Zilker Park to see Kacey Musgraves, Lizzo, and Cardi B perform at Austin City Limits. I’m … Continue reading “Dispatch from Austin: Grokking Beer at ACL and 6th Street”

Dear Client: Reyes keeps rolling in California.  Reyes’ Harbor Distributing has just announced a deal to acquire “substantially all of the assets” of W.A. Thompson, Inc. in Bakersfield, California (a mid-sized city north of Los Angeles). With the acquisition Harbor will add on 7.1 million cases and nearly 14,000 new customer accounts, per release. W.A. … Continue reading “Reyes Acquiring 7-Million Case W.A. Thompson in Bakersfield, CA”

Dear Client: Grab a sheet of paper and a writing utensil, it’s Pop Quiz time. If you haven’t participated in one of these yet, here’s how we’re going to do it. We’ll throw out a question based on the latest IRI data to September 8, you come up with your answer, and we’ll tell you … Continue reading “Pop Quiz on Latest IRI”

Dear Client: RMC Distributing Company and KEG 1, LLC announced an agreement for KEG 1 to “purchase substantially all of the assets” of Colorado-based RMC Distributing Company. Terms were not disclosed, but the deal is expected to close in January.  RMC is pegged at more than 4 million cases. It sells MillerCoors, Constellation, Mike’s Hard … Continue reading “KEG 1 To Make Purchase in Colorado Springs”

Dear Client: On Constellation’s earnings call yesterday, chief Bill Newlands officially announced Corona Hard Seltzer, which Bill admitted was “one of the worst kept secrets” in the beer industry.  But it’s a no-brainer, he thinks, because both the Corona brand family and seltzer are synonymous with refreshment. And Corona has strong brand equity among 21-54 … Continue reading “Corona Betting Big on Seltzer”

Dear Client: Constellation’s second quarter (fiscal 2020) results just hit. Here’s what you need to know: Constellation’s beer business reported depletions up 6.2% for the Q2 2020 quarter (up 7.5% adjusted for selling day impact). That’s just a slight deceleration from Q1 beer depletions, which had been up 6.6%.  Shipments were up 5.3%, also just … Continue reading “Constellation Q2 Depletions Up 6.2%, Shipments Up 5.3%”

Dear Client: Dear Client: Are we just scratching the surface in the better-for-you movement? Is the movement strong enough to bring something like hard sodas back from the dead? We’re about to get a sign, as Crook & Marker gears up to take better-for-you spiked sodas nationally in early 2020.  We’ll bring you all the details … Continue reading “Crook & Marker Looks to Resurrect Hard Sodas”