2017 CBC Takeaways
In April, I was invited by Pete Cook, President of The Brewery Business Network,
to help run his booth at the Craft Brewers Conference & BrewExpo America in Washington, DC. It was my first time at CBC, and it was absolutely
amazing to see over 13,000 brewers and vendors descend on the nation's capitol.
In between shifts at Pete’s booth, I had the chance to sit in on a few conference sessions and walk the trade show floor, talking and swapping stories with brewers and other vendors.
One thing I kept hearing was how many brewers are being affected by the “big beer” takeovers — not because of sales competition but because their customers don’t know who to trust.
“They think we sold out to big beer because we started using a distributor" a regional Texas brewer told me. He wasn’t the only one.
But I think this is something that craft brewers can overcome. It will mean getting clear on how to brand a brewery and keep that brand strong. It will mean the end of random marketing tactics. It will mean taking the high road and keeping beer packaging clean and respectful.
It will mean getting back to craft’s roots. And that’s a strong place to be.