How random is this? Some guy walked into Two Beer Brewing one day and asked if he could buy several hundred cases of beer with the intent of shipping it to Singapore for resale. Or was it Shanghai? Doesn’t really matter. The point is the same: if you want to export your beer to foreign markets, you probably cannot rely on guys randomly walking into your brewery and asking to buy hundreds of cases of beer. Random. I’m pretty sure that Scuttlebutt Brewing is (or was) shipping some beer to Asia as well, but I’m not if it was part of some specific plan or simply another matter of happenstance. I’m betting on happenstance.
I just learned that there is now a company with an expressed mission to export U.S. craft beer to European and Asian markets. CraftCanTravel LLC describes itself as being well-positioned to be a first mover in the craft beer export industry. The company apparently handles all exporting disciplines in-house, but I really don’t know what that means. I guess all I really need to know is that there is now a company that does it, whatever it is.
Craft Brew Alliance (CBA) recently announced that it has signed an agreement to add its products to CraftCanTravel’s catalog. In fact, looking at the CraftCanTravel website, it would seem that right now the CraftCanTravel catalog consists exclusively of CBA products. I would not be surprised if other breweries jumped aboard. I guess. Like I said, I’m not always sure how these things work.
Here’s the press release:
(Portland, OR) – Craft Brew Alliance, Inc. (CBA) (Nasdaq:BREW), an independent craft brewing company operating Kona Brewing Company, Omission Beer, Redhook Brewery and Widmer Brothers Brewing, has signed an agreement with CraftCanTravel (CCT) to exclusively distribute the four craft beer brands to Europe and Asia.
“As our brands continue to develop and grow we are excited to begin sharing our beers with the international beer community through CraftCanTravel,” said Andy Thomas, president of commercial operations. “We see significant opportunity for US craft beers internationally and CBA is uniquely positioned to be an export leader because our brand portfolio offers a wide variety of beers to satisfy any beer drinking occasion.”
Through our exclusive agreement, CraftCanTravel has begun distributing select beers and brands to China, Denmark, Finland, Holland, Hong Kong, Ireland, Japan, Norway, Sweden, Taiwan and the United Kingdom. CBA and CCT will focus distribution on Kona Longboard Lager and Big Wave Golden Ale, Omission Lager and Pale Ale, Redhook Long Hammer IPA and Pilsner, and Widmer Brothers Hefeweizen and the Rotator IPA Series. Specific beers will vary by country.
CraftCanTravel is the first full service craft beer exporting company in the US market focused on exporting US craft beers to foreign markets, building long term relationships with respective importers, and actively and directly managing craft beer portfolio performances in those markets. CCT was launched in 2012 by a team lead by Maarten Kruijtzer, a 22 year beer industry veteran and former Heineken senior executive with extensive export experience across four continents. The exclusive agreement between CraftCanTravel and Craft Brew Alliance will ensure that the quality and integrity of CBA’s beers is maintained throughout distribution, allowing consumers in markets around the world to enjoy the wide range of the company’s unique beers and brands.