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Breweries are constantly looking for new ways to stay up with trends and us here at Hankscraft AJS want to help you with that. We had our team look into some of the upcoming trends of 2024 to help your brewery stay relevant and hip.

  1. Taprooms Put a Premium on Service and Hospitality.

If you're focusing on just getting beer to customers, it is time to put in a little more effort. people have found that guests that go to taprooms are not only looking for good beer, but also a good experience. "Even if the beer is excellent, subpar service can leave a bad taste in customers’ mouths. The consumer experience in our taproom has to be best in class,” says Anthony Martuscello, the founder and president of WestFax Brewing in Lakewood, Colorado. “Just like you want consumers to drink more than one pint, you want them to continue to come back.” 

2. Breweries Get More Creative With Festivals and Events

Festivals and other events still have not fully recovered since COVID-19, so to get those casual beer drinkers off their couches and into your events, breweries need to be more creative. In 2023, StormBreaker rebooted its Brewstillery Fest, pairing local distillers and brewers to curate a spirit-and-beer pairing. The Snallygaster Festival in Washington, D.C., combines rare beers with wine, cocktails, and live music, while Barrel & Flow Fest in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, centers Black brewers alongside musicians, artists, and nonprofits. 

3. More Brewers Pursue Non-Alcoholic and Mindful-Drinking Options

It is becoming more and more popular for people to either give up drinking completely or to cut down on their alcohol consumption. Now this news could freak many breweries out and cause a panic, but there is a way to adjust to this latest trend. More and more breweries are offering non-alcoholic versions of some of their beers. “Not every occasion calls for a beer,” says Lesley Albright, the vice president of marketing for Sierra Nevada Brewing in Chico, California, and Mills River, North Carolina. The company is launching the non-alcoholic Trail Pass line, including an IPA and a golden ale, and adding Hop Splash Citrus, a non-alcoholic hop water. With the introduction of Hop-infused beverages, it secures new drinking occasions and widens your consumer base.

4. Beverage Companies Are Ditching Carbonation

Molson Coors is keying on bloating carbonation as a tension point for of-age Generation Z consumers. “We think a large group of consumers will be entering their ‘bubble-free’ era in 2024,” says Jamie Rotnicki, the vice president of innovation for Molson Coors. This March, the company will release the Happy Thursday “spiked still refresher” in bold flavors like pineapple starfruit. Happy Thursday will join Funny Water, a low-ABV line of flavored alcoholic waters, and NOCA’s uncarbonated boozy waters and hard iced tea.

5. Breweries Will Share Resources and Survive

“Breweries that don’t have the required scale to achieve massive national distribution, but aren’t small enough to be hyperlocal, will feel the squeeze,” says consultant Chris McClellan, the founder of Resin and the Draught Shop.  Market pressures will lead to consolidations and alliances to cut costs and fill excess capacity. By sharing spaces that your brewery may not need all that space for at the time may help you survive this tough market. There is always room for growth and by sharing space does not mean your company will not grow, it's a jumping off point that will help you cut costs and stay afloat long enough to get your brewery off the ground and running.

6. Branded Values Become a Big Selling Point

“Consumers are looking past the product itself and more at the company they’re buying from,” says Rob Tod, the founder of Allagash Brewing in Portland, Maine. Lucky Envelope, a Chinese-American brewery in Seattle, makes beers with Asian ingredients like pandan leaves and hosts an annual Lunar New Year celebration. “There will be a more concerted push to appeal to a diverse, atypical beer drinker,” says Barry Chan, the cofounder and head brewer. Now that you've made good beer, it is time to stand out. By pushing your companies values, it makes your company more personable, causing more people to be drawn to you and your company.

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