ALEXANDRIA, Va. – St. Patrick’s Day marks an important week for the beer distributors and their retail partners in the hospitality industry. On-premise establishments such as bars, taverns and restaurants are gearing up events and parties, and America’s independent beer distributors are also busy delivering to more than 500,000 establishments around the country.
“America’s 3,000 independent beer distributors work with more than 5,000 breweries so that consumers have unprecedented choice and variety,” said NBWA Chief Economist Lester Jones. “Holidays such as St. Patricks’ Day remind us that we can always find our favorite beer or cider on tap and in stores, and often something new to try, because of the beer distribution system in this country.”
Looking back on 2017, sales to retailer data provided by Fintech InfoSource™ help show how important this holiday is to the industry. The hospitality segment of the beer industry saw an overall 15% increase in weekly sales volumes, compared to normal weekly sales volumes. At the same time, some segments of the beer market outperformed others; imported beers saw the largest increase with a 25% gain, followed by cider at 20%, premium lights at 19% and below premiums at 18%.
“This data represents just one week out of 52 weeks in the year,” Jones added. “Beer distributors are experts at helping local retailers determine the right beers for the right occasions during every week of the year.”
The National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA) represents America’s 3,000 independent beer distributors with operations in every state, congressional district and media market across the country. Licensed at the federal and state levels, beer distributors get bottles, cans, cases and kegs from a brewer or importer to stores, restaurants and other licensed retail accounts through a transparent and accountable regulatory system. Distributors build brands of all sizes — from familiar domestic beers to new startup labels and imports from around the world – and generate enormous consumer choice while supporting 135,000 quality jobs in their home communities. Beer distributors work locally to keep communities safe by sponsoring programs to promote responsible consumption, combat drunk driving and work to eliminate underage drinking.