Three main themes emerged during the conference:
1. Craft beers continue to be the fastest growing segment of the industry. This growth includes the emergence of hard ciders, which are increasingly gaining space on shelves. There was much discussion among participants around the definition of a “craft beer,” the debate of craft vs. crafty beer, and the potential dangers of over-indexing SKUs.
2. It was stated that if brewers want to maintain relevance in the market, the entire three-tier system (brewers, distributors, and retailers) should focus on building each of their individual brands. All three entities should invest in communicating the story of each brand, which is what truly connects with consumers and can affect purchasing decisions. This customer connection was said to be a driving force behind the recent growth of craft breweries. Another factor driving growth is that craft brewery owners and their salesmen tend to be true ambassadors to the brand, passionately communicating the full brewery story from their humble beginnings to success as a craft beer contender.
3. Brewers and distributors alike must find additional places within retail stores to merchandise product. This may include utilizing floor space that is traditionally “held” for wine. It was noted several times that wine is more over-indexed in SKUs than beer and spirits. Jim Koch, the founder of Boston Beer Company, closed the conference by reiterating this sentiment. He told the audience that he felt as though it was his responsibility as a brewer to brew great beer that warranted being sold at $10 a bottle alongside wine at retail.
These themes truly resonated with the GAP team and aligned well with the company’s own perspectives on the market. We absolutely share Jim Koch’s enthusiasm about the brewing segment. And, we are incredibly excited to continue to demonstrate our passion and capabilities in creating amazing displays and enhancers that showcase those quality products that merit premier placement at retail.
One of our latest innovations, the GAP Twisted Singles Dispenser, merchandises quality product in a fun and exciting new way. With this display, we aim to bring singles to beer caves and enhance the consumer experience. The GAP Twisted Singles Dispenser, shown below, commands prime placement and warrants instant distribution. If you would like to make your brand stand out from the rest with this innovative, new display, please contact us to be part of our test market. Information and specs for the GAP Twisted Singles Dispenser can be found here. And, as always, you can contact GAP at 888.88.GOGAP (888.884.6427) or firstname.lastname@example.org to collaborate with us in the creation of custom display solutions for all of your brands’ needs.