A survey recently conducted by C+R Research, a market research company based in Chicago, offers some happy results for the craft beer industry. Happy, surprising, and suspect, but still worth taking a look at.
According to data from the Brewers Association, last year craft beer (beer produced by independent, “small” breweries) accounted for less than 15 percent of all beer produced in the United States (volume sales). That translates into about 24 percent of the total amount of money spent on beer (dollar sales).
The C+R Research survey provides a more optimistic view of things. According to the survey, 91percent said they prefer craft beer over big brand beer and 86 percent said they would pay more for the craft beer of their preference, even if cheaper options were available.
Wait a minute, what? Uh, 91 percent?
From March 11 through March 22, 2019, C+R Research conducted an online poll of 2,000 Americans from across the country utilizing Amazon’s Mechanical Turk online platform. Respondents were a mixture of self-reporting males and females ranging from ages 21 to 70 who identified themselves as people who drink alcohol regularly. C+R acknowledges that the study does not represent a scientific sample. In other words, this was a survey, not a scientific study.
C+R reports, “According to people that took our poll, almost half drink craft beer at least once a week. Perhaps even more surprising is that nearly all of the respondents say they drank craft beer at least once within the last month.”
Here are some key takeaways from the poll:
- 49 percent of the respondents drink craft beer at least once a week and 91 percent prefer craft beer over big-brand beer.
- The most-preferred style of craft beer is still IPA and craft beer is most-frequently preferred during the summer months.
- According to 76 percent of the respondents, price does not influence whether they purchase craft beer.
- On average, the respondents said they spent $59 monthly on craft beer.
- 43 percent of Millennials said they visit a brewpub or brewery at least once per month and spend about $63 a month on craft beer.
According to the survey, the top five factors driving craft beer’s growth are:
3. Craft beer culture
4. Growth of breweries
5. Higher alcohol content.
This report from C+R Research suggests that craft beer is more popular than other data reveals. Perhaps the respondents drink craft beer once per week but drink big-brand beer three times per week. Even though they prefer craft beer over big brand beer, and are willing to pay more money for the beer they prefer, maybe they spend a lot more money on big-brand beer. Maybe they think Michelob Ultra, Shock Top, and Blue Moon are craft beers.
This is fun stuff to look at, but I will finish where I began. According to data from the Brewers Association, last year craft beer accounted for less than 15 percent of all beer produced in the United States (volume sales). That translates into about 24 percent of the total amount of money spent on beer (dollar sales).