The Life Stages of Beer Drinkers

Mar 30, 2017

An interesting blog post on Tuesday from Australian on-line publication: ‘The Beer Healer’ was shared through Facebook’s UK Craft Beer Network that we thought had some interesting talking points.

It gave an insight – rightly or wrongly – into the current state of the craft beer industry and how the life stages of the average beer drinker can change our demand for certain types of beer.    

It posed the question:

“Is there a point in time where we lose our curiosity for the next big thing, our beer promiscuity if you will, and settle into wedded bliss with a few of your regular craft beers?”

To provide context to this question the article summarises the craft beer industry as a game of “can you top this” with breweries creating more unique and daring flavour combinations to gain street cred and avoid being lumped in with other craft breweries that “just” produce good beer.

“Breaking through the clutter is important, but somewhere, somehow, just producing solid good beer became old hat, something that people have identified is wrong with bigger breweries who started creating craft beer by the numbers.”  

You may be able to relate to this if you follow any on-line beer groups, as there are frequent posts from craft beer advocates detailing their latest hard to find, limited release beer that should be sought out before stocks run dry.

Please follow this link to see the life stages of the beer drinker – can you relate to this at all?

But when does this advocacy towards more unique beers end? Do you reach a point where you just settle for a well-balanced IPA?

“At what point do the drinkers priorities change, where they stop chasing the weird and wonderful brews and just crave quality and consistency?” Or can you have both?

More importantly should breweries try to anticipate this change and switch to developing more main-stream quality beers? I don’t think this question has a black and white answer, but in our view, we hope not. It may be advisable from a business viewpoint to develop a beer that is more mainstream but fortunately today, that doesn’t mean that you should produce a standard larger or pilsner.

This is where the article ends, but I think there is a notable point to raise irrespective of where you may be in the writer’s life stage of beer drinking, and that is how the craft beer industry is changing thanks to the breweries trying to push the boundaries of our beer palates.

Thanks to breweries such as Brewdog and Beavertown what we once considered ‘out there’ craft beer is now becoming the norm, and this can be seen by the increasing accessibility of craft beer in major retail outfits, pubs and bars.

This increase in accessibility is now prompting more people who may not have sought out craft beer beforehand to be more mindful of what they drink. Hopefully this will create more awareness of regional breweries that, in my opinion, are creating beers that are just as good, if not better than the likes of Brewdog but aren’t as well known.

Given time I hope this increase in consumer awareness during the ‘research’ phase of a beer drinkers’ life will push more of the regional breweries into the mainstream further developing the variety and complexity of the UK craft beer industry.    

So, when you do reach the later stage of your beer drinking life your standard comfort zone beer, for a lot of us anyway, will most likely include beers that were once considered ‘out-there’.

If you are creating a new craft beer and need some help or advice when it comes to packaging and decoration, please get in touch. We are proud to have lots of customers in the craft brew industry.

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