5 Facts about the Craft Beer World That Might Surprise You
Craft beer just keeps growing in popularity—but you probably don’t need to be told that. You can just look at the diverse offerings on the shelves of most stores, the local beers on tap at the pub, and the number of small, independent breweries springing up around the country and the world to see that. However, this shift from macro-breweries to craft breweries is a relatively recent phenomenon, and even if you’re someone who makes it a goal to try new craft beers on a weekly basis, there’s still a lot left to learn. In the spirit of increasing our knowledge about the craft beer industry, here are 5 facts that might surprise you.
Over 1 in 3 adults already drink craft beer. According to Mintel’s Craft Beer Report from 2012, at least 36% of consumers already drink craft beer, and 45% of consumers say they would try more craft beers if they knew more about them.
A lambic style beer is the most popular in the world—but we also love IPAs. “Best beer in the world” is obviously subjective, but the folks at RateBeer looked at thousands of votes from beer drinkers worldwide to come up with a popular consensus. Their results show that a lambic style, Belgian beer called 3 Fonteinen Hommage is the most popular craft beer currently, but there are also a number of IPAs that rank highly. In fact, IPAs are the most popular style of beer in the US, and British beer drinkers have also embraced hoppy, double IPAs from California.
There are thousands of small breweries in the country. There are over 2,400 craft breweries in the US today, the highest number since the 1880s. Small breweries are also making their mark in the UK; The Guardian reported that as of 2012, there were over 1,000 breweries in the country. That’s about one brewery for every 50 pubs!
Sales of craft beer are projected to triple by 2017. In 2007, sales of craft beer totaled $5.7 billion US dollars. Sounds like a lot, but that number increased even more to $12 billion by 2012. By 2017, that number is expected to triple.
There are tens of thousands of careers in the craft beer industry. According to the American Brewer’s Association, there are an estimated 103,585 jobs provided by the craft beer industry. The job outlook isn’t too shabby in the UK, either. There were around 900 new jobs added in the growing craft beer industry this past year alone, and a total estimated employment of 5,500 people. If you’re interested in working in the craft beer industry, you don’t necessarily have to be a master brewer—you can work as a server in a brewpub or work on the management side, just to name a few options.
To learn even more about the craft beer industry (including how to pair different craft beers with your food), check out the infographic from Kendall College below.