By Andy Young, TheShout
The Brewers Association in the US is launching a new seal which certifies independent craft brewers, in an attempt to educate beer lovers about which brews are independently produced.
The seal features an upside down beer bottle, which the association says “captures the spirit with which craft brewers have upended beer”.
Brewers Association President and CEO, Bob Pease, said: “Independent craft brewers continue to turn the beer industry on its head by putting community over corporation and beer before the bottom line. They continue to better beer and our country by going beyond just making the beverage. These small businesses give back to their backyard communities and support thousands of cities and towns across the US.
“As Big Beer acquires former craft brands, beer drinkers have become increasingly confused about which brewers remain independent. Beer lovers are interested in transparency when it comes to brewery ownership. This seal is a simple way to provide that clarity; now they can know what’s been brewed small and certified independent.”
The seal is available to any of the more than 5300 independent craft brewers currently operating in the US, whether or not they are a member of the association. The association said to be able to use the seal a brewer must have a valid Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) Brewer’s Notice, meet the Brewers Association’s craft brewer definition and sign a lease agreement.
“Craft brewers build communities and the spirit of independent ownership matters” said Rob Tod, chair, Brewers Association Board of Directors and founder of Allagash Brewing Company in Portland.
“When beer lovers buy independent craft beer, they are supporting American entrepreneurs and the risk takers who have long strived not just to be innovative and make truly great beer, but to also build culture and community in the process.”
The move comes after a recent survey commissioned by Brewbound and conducted by Nielsen found that ‘independent’ and ‘independently owned’ strongly resonated with more than 80 per cent of craft beer drinkers.
The clarification between ‘craft’ and ‘independent’ beer has also been seen in Australia with the Craft Beer Industry Association recently changing its name to the Independent Brewers Association and voting to remove large brewers from its membership.