Author Topic: Another view about commercial Nano brewing.  (Read 2146 times)

Offline Thirsty_Monk

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Offline nateo

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Re: Another view about commercial Nano brewing.
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2012, 07:54:02 AM »
I spent an afternoon crunching the numbers, and it became apparent that anything under 3bbl would most likely end up being a money pit, even with optimistic estimates.

Brewing is an industry. Economies of scale make a big difference very quickly.

The guy who posted that does mention that it can be useful as a "proof of concept" thing to get the brewery up and running, but any business plan involving nanobrewing should either have outside capital planned into it, or not plan on being able to pay yourself for you time.
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Offline majorvices

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Re: Another view about commercial Nano brewing.
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2012, 02:16:24 PM »
Man, that guy hit the nail on the head. I could have wrote that. FTR I have been suggesting teh "proof of concept" thing on small systems from the beginning. On anything smaller than a 7-10 bbl system that is all you will be doing. If that is what a brewer is trying to do I say go for it. But just understand the amount of free labor it takes to float such an endeavor.
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Re: Another view about commercial Nano brewing.
« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2012, 02:27:22 PM »
I'm actually considering setting up a .5-1.5 bbl pilot system. Economically, I can't justify doing that instead of just putting the money into the full-size system, but it would be fun to have around for pilot batches and one-off beers down the road.

Realistically, I think my 10 gal home system will be our "pilot system".
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Offline nateo

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Re: Another view about commercial Nano brewing.
« Reply #4 on: March 17, 2012, 02:17:45 PM »
I know it's apples-to-oranges, but I asked about production volume over on winepress.us (a site for amateur and small wineries), and I thought the response was interesting:

"My advice is to start small and let sales drive your future volume increases. Running out of wine and putting up a sign that says sold out is far better that putting up a sign that says "selling our wine cheap because it's not very good and we overproduced and can't sell it". Of course you're sign won't say that but this is modern America and customers are very perceptive. When a winery is constantly running promotions and sales there is a subtle message of desperation sent that devalues the brand. When you put up the sign that says sold out the underlying message is "this stuff is damn good and you should have gotten off your butt and bought some when it was available and next time you see it available you'd better buy a case before it's sold out again."

Who knows? Maybe if you're really marketing saavy you can turn ultra-low production into a selling point, and command a high price for you beer.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Another view about commercial Nano brewing.
« Reply #5 on: March 17, 2012, 03:43:03 PM »
I'm actually considering setting up a .5-1.5 bbl pilot system. Economically, I can't justify doing that instead of just putting the money into the full-size system, but it would be fun to have around for pilot batches and one-off beers down the road.

Realistically, I think my 10 gal home system will be our "pilot system".

One of the local places does this.  They often feature beers brewed under the supervision of the brewers that are on tap one night a week.
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Offline majorvices

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Re: Another view about commercial Nano brewing.
« Reply #6 on: March 17, 2012, 06:01:11 PM »


Who knows? Maybe if you're really marketing saavy you can turn ultra-low production into a selling point, and command a high price for you beer.

Wow. And here I've been trying to undercut Natty Lite all this time.  ;)
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Offline nateo

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Re: Another view about commercial Nano brewing.
« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2012, 06:24:09 PM »
Wow. And here I've been trying to undercut Natty Lite all this time.  ;)

Ommegang comes to mind. I have no idea how much money they make, but I've never seen their beers on tap or in 6 packs.

Belgian beers in general sell for much more per liter than any 6 packs I've seen.

Anyway, it was just something I thought was interesting.
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Re: Another view about commercial Nano brewing.
« Reply #8 on: March 18, 2012, 05:35:18 AM »
I was just being a smart aleck (drinking all day brings that out in me) - I agree with you 100% and that is the model we follow. In some restaurants we have the most expensive beer on tap. There is a feeling of prestige that goes along with paying a little more. Of course, you also have to have quality to back it up.
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Re: Another view about commercial Nano brewing.
« Reply #9 on: March 19, 2012, 01:13:29 PM »
I know it's apples-to-oranges, but I asked about production volume over on winepress.us (a site for amateur and small wineries), and I thought the response was interesting:

"My advice is to start small and let sales drive your future volume increases. Running out of wine and putting up a sign that says sold out is far better that putting up a sign that says "selling our wine cheap because it's not very good and we overproduced and can't sell it". Of course you're sign won't say that but this is modern America and customers are very perceptive. When a winery is constantly running promotions and sales there is a subtle message of desperation sent that devalues the brand. When you put up the sign that says sold out the underlying message is "this stuff is damn good and you should have gotten off your butt and bought some when it was available and next time you see it available you'd better buy a case before it's sold out again."

Who knows? Maybe if you're really marketing saavy you can turn ultra-low production into a selling point, and command a high price for you beer.

I think that is easier for a winery which has a seasonal/annual product. Customers know that you can't just 'buy more grain' and the culture is more geared towards customers buying for storage (even if it is just short term).   
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Re: Another view about commercial Nano brewing.
« Reply #10 on: March 19, 2012, 01:26:12 PM »
I know it's apples-to-oranges, but I asked about production volume over on winepress.us (a site for amateur and small wineries), and I thought the response was interesting:

"My advice is to start small and let sales drive your future volume increases. Running out of wine and putting up a sign that says sold out is far better that putting up a sign that says "selling our wine cheap because it's not very good and we overproduced and can't sell it". Of course you're sign won't say that but this is modern America and customers are very perceptive. When a winery is constantly running promotions and sales there is a subtle message of desperation sent that devalues the brand. When you put up the sign that says sold out the underlying message is "this stuff is damn good and you should have gotten off your butt and bought some when it was available and next time you see it available you'd better buy a case before it's sold out again."

Who knows? Maybe if you're really marketing saavy you can turn ultra-low production into a selling point, and command a high price for you beer.

I think that is easier for a winery which has a seasonal/annual product. Customers know that you can't just 'buy more grain' and the culture is more geared towards customers buying for storage (even if it is just short term).

This is where that all important 'Estate' label would come into the equation. If you are growing your own grain and hops it becomes a seasonal product as once your crop is gone it's gone.
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Re: Another view about commercial Nano brewing.
« Reply #11 on: March 19, 2012, 02:08:08 PM »
thanks for posting.
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Re: Another view about commercial Nano brewing.
« Reply #12 on: March 19, 2012, 03:02:03 PM »
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Offline nateo

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Re: Another view about commercial Nano brewing.
« Reply #13 on: March 19, 2012, 04:31:16 PM »
I came across these guys the other day: http://www.crookedstave.com/

Looks like they're trying to do pretty much what I was describing. Who knows if it'll work out for them.
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Offline garc_mall

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Re: Another view about commercial Nano brewing.
« Reply #14 on: March 20, 2012, 02:03:21 PM »
I came across these guys the other day: http://www.crookedstave.com/

Looks like they're trying to do pretty much what I was describing. Who knows if it'll work out for them.

I don't know how successful he is money wise, but he makes a mean saison. I picked up a bottle when I was in Colorado, and it was tasty.
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