Drinking and alcohol have long been a part of Australian culture. From the rum days of colonisation and beers playing backyard cricket to creative cocktails and world famous wine festivals, our culture has evolved through different traditions and influences, such as immigration, which have also changed what we drink.
While beer has traditionally been the most popular alcoholic beverage throughout Australia, trends have changed in recent times with other options such as wine and cider now becoming the tipple of choice, however, craft beer continues to buck the beer trend benefiting from an increase in sales and popularity.
With more than 18,000 people participating in their 2018 Australian Craft Beer survey, Beer Cartel found that craft beer is still the only segment of the Australian beer market which is actually experiencing growth. Deloitte’s confirmed these figures, reporting that with beer drinking at 65 year lows, wine is now the most popular alcoholic beverage.
Beer Cartel also found that the market is benefiting from consumers who no longer have strong loyalty to traditional brands and instead are willing to experiment more, supporting independent Australian breweries.
Craft beer is becoming more popular due to changing tastes, with people looking for new blends and tastes in beer. This has piggybacked onto the wine and cider markets where there are a greater variety in flavours, textures and strengths available.
While there is no distinct definition of craft beer, the most common themes include small or private brewers, individual or unique flavours and low production volumes, but above all is the focus on a high quality product.
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As a result of these craft beer characteristics, changes are occurring in the way beer is consumed. Pale ales are the highest selling beer with 31 per cent of the market share, with traditional favourites stout and lagers only making up a combined 14 per cent. The amount of beer being purchased has reduced, with six packs now making up 51 per cent of purchases while cartons of beer only account for 27 per cent.
With an increasing number of craft beer varieties available, the good news for consumers is that there are a few apps available which can help you find new brands, flavours and styles to try. The most popular app is ‘Untapped’ which provides craft beer ratings, brewery locations and industry news, along with information on craft beer events. Other useful apps include ‘The Crafty Pint’ and ‘Now Tapped’.
For the full results of the Beer Cartel survey and to find out more about craft beer, visit https://www.beercartel.com.au/blog/2018-australian-craft-beer-survey-results/.