CBAM Issue 2, 2021

Page 12


By Elie Y. Katz

On the rise Craft sales are increasing in convenience stores, here’s why Craft beers are everywhere these days. There are some places you'd expect to find independently brewed IPAs, Pilsners Ales, and more, from stand-alone and chain liquor stores to the alcohol sections of supermarkets. But there's another, somewhat untapped market, that may present a new opportunity for craft brewers to boost sales. People also are quenching their thirst, especially over the last year for microbrews, at bodegas and convenience stores. While not usually thought of as a craft beer destination, sales data recently collected by National Retail Solutions (NRS) from more than 3,000 stores in its network found that craft beer sales significantly increased in several categories. While overall beer sales at its stores increased by 16% in 2020 Y-O-Y 2019, and beer, flavored malt beverages and cider were up 20% in 2020, craft beer purchases skyrocketed by 29%.



Six-packs sold best in 2020, accounting for 55% of craft beer sales, while individual bottles and cans represented 25% of sales. Interestingly, though, 12-packs and multipacks of less than six cans or bottles experienced the greatest growth, at 64% and 87% respectively. Consumers seem to be interested in either purchasing in bulk to keep stocked up or just enough for a few days. This type of data is important because it lets

ISSUE 2, 2021


craft brewers allocate the right mix of categories and provides predictive forecasting for the year ahead so that customers can always find what they need. In addition, new points of distribution for craft beer rose 12% across the NRS stores in the last quarter of 2020 compared to the first quarter of 2020 (pre-COVID), which translates to two additional SKUs per store. Meanwhile, mass-produced beer stayed flat— and no one likes flat beer—for new points of distribution during the same time period. This data must take into consideration that craft brews only represented 4.8% of NRS stores’ total beer dollars in 2020 versus 25% in the overall US Beer Market, but that's not a bad thing. To the contrary, there is tremendous room for growth and opportunity for revenue generation in a market that is gaining steam. Independent brewers would be wise to look at bodegas and convenience stores to accelerate growth. NRS stores' demographic also is a key indicator and driver of investment opportunities. A great number

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