A recent CBS news story shares the phenomenal growth of craft beers nationwide. The statistics are telling, and I believe they reflect just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to small and independent manufacturers of handmade and artisan products nationwide. Watch this video to learn more.
People genuinely enjoy authentically produced, made in the USA products that are crafted in their own back yards. As one person interviewed in the video said, when it comes to beer, people want more than just an “alcohol delivery system.” I think the same is true when it comes to other things they can buy from people in their own communities: jewlery, soap, cosmetics, candles … it's an endless list. People want quality products made with heart, and Indies are producing them in growing numbers nationwide.
- Numbers don't lie. Last year, while sales of domestic beer were down 2.2%, and sales of imports were down nearly 10%, sales of Indie craft beer rose 7.2%.
- Local is the real thing. Breweries must produce no more than 2 million barrels of beer a year to maintain their “craft” status. While they cost more as a result, analysts say that consumers enjoy affordable luxuries, especially when they are made in their local communities. This desire seems quite pronounced in the food arena, but it seems to be a growing in other industries as well. I believe craft beer is just the tip of the ice berg.
- Experience counts. Anyone can buy cheap anything anywhere. But as this news piece shows, people are looking for more than commodities today. They're looking for quality, and they want to see it combined with an experience — something they can remember and tell their friends about.
It's exciting to see this opening for Indies to leverage what comes so naturally to them. Small businesses have always known what their customers wanted, and now that consumers want more handmade, Indie, artisan crafted goods, the time is ripe for everyone to get what they want. Consumers can enjoy affordable luxury, and families nationwide can enjoy the freedom and fun that comes from owning and managing a business of their own.
Question: Do you support Indie craft beers and other Indie products? What are your favorites?