Author Topic: Goose island struggling  (Read 728 times)

Offline Wilbur

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Goose island struggling
« on: March 31, 2018, 10:51:03 PM »
Either goose island is missing the mark it I am. This might be a bit of an overstatement as well, as they have the fourth best selling

http://www.chicagotribune.com/dining/ct-food-goose-island-rebound-0404-story.html

A lot of focus on packaging, less emphasis on the beer.

Offline ethinson

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Re: Goose island struggling
« Reply #1 on: April 02, 2018, 03:31:05 PM »
We don't get much Goose out here in Oregon.  We get Bourbon County and then I might occasionally see Goose IPA and a few specialty bottles like Matilda.  The only thing I've noticed is at a couple bottle shops I've seen BCBS Base Stout on shelves long after the black Friday release.  It's usually not much, one or two bottles and none of the variants, only the black label base stout.  I've always assumed that was from a huge ramp up in production and maybe a little blowback from the 2015 infected batches.  Never really thought they were "struggling". 

Also, as has probably been noted in other threads, the whole industry has been down, so they may have seen a "drop" in sales, but no more or less than everyone else saw. 
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Offline MDixon

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Re: Goose island struggling
« Reply #2 on: April 02, 2018, 05:17:38 PM »
I'm not convinced the industry as a whole is down, but we are not gaining new beer consumers at the same rate as breweries are opening. I write for a beeriodical about NC beer. At one time I wrote the NC/SC column and I was pretty much discussing the same breweries every other publication. Now I have a backlog of breweries to write about and in some cases a brewery is a year or two deep in the queue. Eventually the new brewery growth will slow and the consumer base will catch up, but currently if a brewery is making 20bbl per year and let's say 10bbl is sold to devoted fans they stand a chance of losing 10bbl in sales as new breweries open and grab part of their sales. I expect more closures in the coming years or after a major hop or malt shortage.

As far as GI, I have it about once per year when BC is out. YMMV
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Offline yso191

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Re: Goose island struggling
« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2018, 05:41:09 PM »
And the elephant in this conversation is the tendency of the beer community to not support macro-brew. 
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Offline erockrph

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Re: Goose island struggling
« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2018, 06:30:58 PM »
And the elephant in this conversation is the tendency of the beer community to not support macro-brew.

I have a hard time believing that the majority of people who drink craft beer are "in the know" enough where this would make a major impact on a large scale. But one can hope - I know that I don't drink Goose IPA anymore.

The real reason could be that they are no longer the only major craft brand in the AB-InBev portfolio. I'm starting to see Elysian Space Dust pop up in quite a few places, and we didn't get Elysian out my way before at all.
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Offline Phil_M

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Re: Goose island struggling
« Reply #5 on: April 02, 2018, 06:48:25 PM »
And the elephant in this conversation is the tendency of the beer community to not support macro-brew.

I think this mentality is less true than it is believed to be. On the whole, my friends who drink craft beer still drink macro beer. I can't think of any who don't from to to time, the more I think on it. But most of my friends aren't diehard beer geeks, they just enjoy finding good beer and socializing.

It's always important to point out that not all macro beer is hostile to the craft side of the industry. Guinness is an excellent example, they've done a lot try and improve MD beer laws for the small guys. The only macro I personally avoid is inbev, due to their pretty hostile stance to homebrewing not too long ago. However, if that changes and they play nice, I'll buy their products again.

I think another reason most folks who like craft beer buy macro is there isn't a similar product available from the craft guys. Just try and find a non-Guinness stout under 5% abv for example. Heck, just try finding any sessionable craft beer that's actually drinkable at this point. (Besides Yuengling and Sam Adams, I don't know of any good under 5% craft beer...at least in my area.)
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Offline Stevie

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Re: Goose island struggling
« Reply #6 on: April 02, 2018, 11:46:58 PM »
And the elephant in this conversation is the tendency of the beer community to not support macro-brew.

I think this mentality is less true than it is believed to be. On the whole, my friends who drink craft beer still drink macro beer. I can't think of any who don't from to to time, the more I think on it. But most of my friends aren't diehard beer geeks, they just enjoy finding good beer and socializing.

It's always important to point out that not all macro beer is hostile to the craft side of the industry. Guinness is an excellent example, they've done a lot try and improve MD beer laws for the small guys. The only macro I personally avoid is inbev, due to their pretty hostile stance to homebrewing not too long ago. However, if that changes and they play nice, I'll buy their products again.

I think another reason most folks who like craft beer buy macro is there isn't a similar product available from the craft guys. Just try and find a non-Guinness stout under 5% abv for example. Heck, just try finding any sessionable craft beer that's actually drinkable at this point. (Besides Yuengling and Sam Adams, I don't know of any good under 5% craft beer...at least in my area.)
I agree. Many of us live in a vacuum when it comes to beer. Reminds me of when my college roommate would complain about there being three country radio stations when he swore nobody listened to country.

I’d say 75% of the BBQs I go to are serviced by 30 racks of Bud Lite and maybe a case or two of corona and blue moon.

Online Robert

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Re: Goose island struggling
« Reply #7 on: April 02, 2018, 11:59:47 PM »
I just picked up a sixer of a 4.3%abv "OG Lager" (their description) from Market Garden in Cleveland.   It's at least the 3rd or 4th similar product I've seen appear on the scene in this region in recent months, and this is obviously  not a summer seasonal situation.  Seems a genuine response to the demand for macro-ish beers among the customer base.
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Offline ethinson

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Re: Goose island struggling
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2018, 11:56:02 AM »
And the elephant in this conversation is the tendency of the beer community to not support macro-brew.

I think this mentality is less true than it is believed to be. On the whole, my friends who drink craft beer still drink macro beer. I can't think of any who don't from to to time, the more I think on it. But most of my friends aren't diehard beer geeks, they just enjoy finding good beer and socializing.

It's always important to point out that not all macro beer is hostile to the craft side of the industry. Guinness is an excellent example, they've done a lot try and improve MD beer laws for the small guys. The only macro I personally avoid is inbev, due to their pretty hostile stance to homebrewing not too long ago. However, if that changes and they play nice, I'll buy their products again.

I think another reason most folks who like craft beer buy macro is there isn't a similar product available from the craft guys. Just try and find a non-Guinness stout under 5% abv for example. Heck, just try finding any sessionable craft beer that's actually drinkable at this point. (Besides Yuengling and Sam Adams, I don't know of any good under 5% craft beer...at least in my area.)

In my experience, it doesn't seem to be anti all Macro, just INBev.  Considering they actively attack craft beer, both with advertising and ownership of distributors, it makes sense.  Other macro owned, but non-InBev breweries seem to be doing just fine.  Lagunitas and Ballast Point are doing well (to my knowledge).

Also, as with most things, a loud but small vocal minority can make it seem like an entire crowd feels a certain way when in reality it's not so.... the squeaky wheel gets the grease.
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Offline Wilbur

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Re: Goose island struggling
« Reply #9 on: April 03, 2018, 03:50:16 PM »
Some interesting numbers from IRI:

Same link as above:
Quote
Even more of a concern was the damage in Goose Island’s own backyard: 312 Urban Wheat Ale, Green Line, Four Star Pils and Honker’s Ale were all down double digits in Chicago. Goose Island’s overall Chicago sales were down 7 percent, while one of its biggest local competitors, Revolution Brewing, was up 34 percent.

https://www.brewbound.com/news/iri-worldwide-us-beer-sales-exceed-34-billion-2017
Quote
Craft dollar sales increased 5.6 percent, to more than $4 billion, while volume sales increased 3.6 percent in 2017. And dollar sales of domestic super premiums — such as Michelob Ultra — increased 11.3 percent, to more than $2.5 billion, while volume sales were up 9.4 percent.

Blue Moon is the top selling "craft".

Quote
Volume sales of several other notable core craft brands also struggled in 2017. Among them, Sierra Nevada Pale Ale (-9.1 percent) and Torpedo Extra IPA (-5.5 percent); New Belgium Fat Tire Amber Ale (-12.5 percent); Shock Top (-7.5 percent); and Boston Beer Company’s Samuel Adams Boston Lager (-11.8 percent) and Rebel IPA (-23.1 percent)....Meanwhile, three large craft beer suppliers were able to achieve single-digit growth in 2017, including Yuengling (3.1 percent), New Belgium (6.2 percent) and Lagunitas (9.4 percent).

It seems like a bit of a mixed bag. I'm starting to feel like maybe looking at individual beers is not the way to go. Part of the point of craft is more variety, so why care about declines in sales Fat Tire when New Belgium is up overall? Rampant grew 89%. I'm more inclined to look at down sales for Goose as they are declining across the board. I'd like to post some more numbers, but I'm getting to the point of having the whole article in here. I'm glad to see growth in New Glarus, but I wish more places would stay small/local like they do.

When it comes to BBQ's, Busch light seems to be the choice around here. Still a good handful that bring some kind of craft or crafty brew.

Offline BrewingRover

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Re: Goose island struggling
« Reply #10 on: April 04, 2018, 10:55:59 PM »
The part about sales being down in Chicago was interesting to me. I've been seeing Elysian all over the place, including grocery stores. So InBev is cannibalizing their own brands, to some extent. But I also think they've lost a ton of draft accounts, as I rarely see Goose handles in good beer bars.

It's such a fine line between stupid and clever.