Congratulations to Beer Cartel on the release of the results of their third annual Australian Craft Beer Survey. The survey offers a wealth of information on what more than 18,000 Australian craft beer lovers are drinking and thinking and it demonstrates the dynamic nature of our Indie Beer sector.
It’s a fantastic result for Independent Brewers around Australia, because it confirms what we as a sector know: that independence matters. In the context of growing awareness, the IBA’s recently-released Independence Seal:
“.…has huge potential to dramatically change the beers consumers buy; 83% of consumers aware of the seal said it was likely to have a medium to large impact on their beer purchases.”
To date, almost half of the IBA’s members have adopted the Seal on their packaging and as the IBA releases its Labeling Guidelines in the near future, we expect this figure will jump on the back of these Beer Cartel survey results.
Indie Brewers to the Front
Most survey respondents are clearly aware of craft beer buyouts in Australia and the survey shows that consumers are, as a result, thinking twice about where they spend their beer dollars. Here, congratulations are due to the country’s favourite brewers – Balter leads this impressive pack – which we’re happy to say are overwhelmingly independent. Congrats also to the Indie Brewers, large and small, who are successfully showcasing their beers at their own venues, which are fast becoming a new force in Australian tourism and hospitality.
An Agile, Responsive Ecosystem
What’s also very apparent from Beer Cartel’s survey results is that this cohort of consumers values highly the diversity, artisanship and innovation that Indie Brewers are serving up to Australians:
“On average, five out of every ten beers purchased by consumers are for previously untried beers.”
The sheer number of new and seasonal releases from IBA members is a joy to behold and it does not happen by accident. Our Indie Beer scene is an agile, responsive ecosystem, where brewers are well supported by our supply chain colleagues and professional advisers – our IBA Associate Members – to grow and develop their businesses in step with demand, and their offerings as trends emerge.
Heralding a Cultural Shift
We’re seeing a cultural shift here in Australia and the Indie Beer scene is a vibrant part of it. In such a fast-paced market, the beer media play a critical role in heralding new styles, new players and new venues, educating and informing a growing band of beer lovers. It’s great to see the work of these media – Crafty Pint, Beer & Brewer, Beer Advocate, Australian Brews News and Rate Beer – recognised in the survey results.
In the same vein, it’s also great to recognise the Indie Beer pioneers, the craft beer bars, pubs and bottleshops as well as the beer festivals and Beer Weeks staged around the country. Market access is a real problem in this country and these venues, retailers and events are at the forefront of a shift away from outdated attitudes towards new and exciting experiences. The IBA will be working with them to leverage the power of the Independence Seal in the months ahead.
The Months Ahead
To support and grow our dynamic Indie Beer sector, the IBA looks forward to working more closely with our Associate Members, our trade, retail, venue and event partners.
The IBA has as its clear mission to lift the market share of Indie Beer in Australia. While this Beer Cartel research focuses on consumers who are already engaged with the Indie Beer market, the work of the coming months for the IBA and our members is also to break through to new markets and to ensure more Australians try Indie Beer.
We encourage you to review the 2018 Beer Cartel survey results closely. Congratulations again to all those recognised in these results and thanks to all those who took the time to participate in the survey.