In the modern age of beer production, the proliferation of craft beer leaves an unprecedented number of options and styles to choose from. As the 5,000+ craft breweries and traditional conglomerates jostle for market position and fight off external pressures, the battle to create the tastiest beer has never been fiercer.
As a fan of beer, I am constantly bombarded by incongruent news stories. It seems that the medical research community are unable to decide whether beer is good for you. It seems that beer, and more broadly alcohol, continues to be seen as an evil that causes a plethora of chronic diseases, conditions and ailments. But every now and then good beer news surfaces.
AB InBev's North American CEO Joao Castro Neves warns of beer losing its throne as the largest American alcohol market segment as soon as 2030. This projection is based on statistics showing a dramatic 33% loss of market share in the 21-27 year old demographic between 2006 and 2016. In the former, beer made up 65% of total alcohol consumption, falling to just 43% in 2016.
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It's hard to deny the size and economic impact of America's craft beer industry. In fact, the Brewers Association estimates that the 24.6 million barrels of craft beer brewed in the U.S. in 2016 contributed $23.5billion to the economy.
You'd be forgiven if you struggled to pinpoint the flavor profile of South Australia based brewer Mike Holden's "Shale Ale". Holden elaborates: "The beer definitely has a unique flavor to it, but it is not something that is off-putting or maybe something that people will not even recognize."
Have you ever thought about where yeast comes from? It's obviously an integral part of the beer brewing process. For Indiana based brewer Robert Caputo, the source of yeast proved to be a pain point. Caputo was eager to create a beer that was 100% Indianan. He had sourced malts, hops and water from Indiana with little issue, but was struggling to find yeasts native to the state. Enter his friend, Mathew Bochman.
As we rapidly approach the one-year mark of the Trump presidency, it's hard to argue against him being one of the most controversial heads of state in recorded history. Given his focus on "the wall" and his recent decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, immigration - particularly that from Mexico and across the southern border - is a hot button issue.