Challenges Faced by Craft Breweries

Challenges Faced by Craft Breweries

The craft beer market has seen a large spike in popularity and variety over the last several decades. Since the 1990s, the number of independent brewers has grown from a few hundred to greater than 6,400 today, according to the US Treasury Department. But as this rapid growth has continued, many craft beer companies have come to realize that there are many problems they must overcome if they want to stay in operation. Here are four examples of the challenges faced by craft breweries.

Surging Market

A big problem facing many craft breweries is the number of brewing companies that exist today. The market has started to become saturated, making it difficult to stand out from the competition. There are only so many ways to brew beer, so finding a way to differentiate yourself from other brewers can mean the difference between thriving and permanently closing your doors.

No Brand Awareness

An extension of the market saturation problem, many craft breweries struggle with creating and maintaining brand awareness. While large-scale brewers can afford to spend money on advertisements, smaller breweries must be more strategic with their marketing budget. Creating and building a loyal brand following helps sustain a brewhouse, even in the most challenging economic times.

Waste Issues

The question of what to do with the large amount of waste has always been, and will continue to be, a major problem for small-scale brewing operations. Independent crafters must figure out how to deal with the solid waste created by all the extra ingredients that give each brew its unique taste. While some breweries are turning to composting or other forms of waste management, others are still struggling with the sheer volume of waste they produce.

Distribution Difficulties

Another of the challenges faced by craft breweries is the distribution of their product. Large-scale breweries can manufacture and ship their beer anywhere in the country, but independent brewers are typically limited to regional distribution at best. A craft brewery must figure out how to create and improve upon their cold supply chain if they want to have any chance of surviving.