What's On Tap?
Pilsner. Lager. Porter. Imperial stout. Irish stout. English pale ale. India pale ale. Scotch ale. Brown ale. Golden ale. Wheat beer. Barleywine. Maibock. Doppelbock. Dubbel. Tripel. Quadrupel.
And you thought your options were limited to regular and light.
According to the Brewers Association's Web site, over 210 million barrels of beer were sold in America in 2008, generating $101 billion. To put this into perspective, that is approximately one barrel per adult citizen, equivalent to two kegs, 31 gallons or 330 bottles per person. Not that you drank that much, of course.
Beer is big business, as is the bar and restaurant industry that serves as the bartender to most Americans. The National Restaurant Association anticipates industry sales to increase 2.5 percent in 2009, making it equal to 4 percent of the GDP—or approximately $560 billion. Time to tap into the keg's potential and watch the profits flow like, well, you know.
99 Bottles of Beer on The Wall
Sidle up to any bar in any town and you'll find yourself surrounded by the familiar logo-bearing trappings of the industry: Bud Light lights, Sam Adams coasters, Miller Lite pint glasses. Bars brand themselves by showcasing their own brand loyalties, so it may be tempting to approach the big name breweries, but there's a reason their logos are already everywhere. "Generally, there is no room for distributors to work directly with large breweries—the breweries can tell you how much each product costs and they probably know the factory that makes [it]," said Jim Wysopal, president of Openers Plus, Costa Mesa, Calif., a bottle opener manufacturer with nearly 20 years experience making openers for companies such as Budweiser and Corona. His advice? Think locally. "There's tons of opportunity for the promo distributor to work with the beer distributors, importers, microbreweries and restaurants," he stated.