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The Beer Ticker: Industry News & Notes, New Year Edition

From an icon going hazy to resealable beer cans, here are some recent news and announcements from around the industry.

Brewing Industry Guide Staff Jan 5, 2023 - 7 min read

The Beer Ticker: Industry News & Notes, New Year Edition Primary Image

Photo: Courtesy Bell’s Brewery

BA’s Year-End Report: Flexibility Amid Tough Competition

The Brewers Association released its 2022 Year in Beer report, and its conclusions set the stage for another challenging year for independent brewers. The BA’s predictions for 2023 include the lowest number of brewery openings in a decade; zero growth in distributed craft volume; some relief in average prices on materials, even if the supply chain remains unstable; and an increase in total brewery employment. “[For many brewers,] 2023 will be a reset ... as they return to more conscious and thoughtful innovation to balance customer demand and adapt to supply-chain fluctuations,” says Bart Watson, the BA’s chief economist. Among other findings, the report cites a bounce-back in total on-premise sales, while draft-beer sales—long a key to craft beer’s success—have yet to recover to pre-pandemic levels. Smaller taproom-focused breweries and brewpubs proved to be nimble amid supply-chain disruptions, while breweries that distribute found themselves in tough competition for shelf space with other breweries as well as other alcoholic drinks. The full report is available on the BA’s website.

Bell’s Expands Two Hearted Fam with Hazy Hearted, and More

Bell’s Two Hearted IPA is iconic, and the Michigan brewery has capitalized on that beer’s popularity in recent years by establishing a brand family that includes Light Hearted and Double Two Hearted. Coming into 2023, Bell’s announced a wider extension of that family, led by Hazy Hearted IPA at 7.5 percent ABV, described as having “a tropical, fruit-forward flavor with moderate hoppy bitterness and a balanced, slightly sweet finish.” Hazy Hearted also is part of a new Hearted IPA variety pack that also includes Two Hearted, Big Hearted—a new imperial IPA, exclusive to the pack—and Change of Heart, an experimental rotating offering. The first Change of Heart is a cold IPA of 6.8 percent ABV “featuring fruit-forward and piney notes with a clean, dry finish.”

Allagash Releases First Year-Round IPA

Best known for its flagship witbier, Maine-based Allagash Brewing has announced the release of the first IPA to join its year-round core beers. The brewery’s announcement describes Allagash Hop Reach as “balanced, citrusy, and tropical” with “a snap of bitterness.” The beer became available throughout Allagash’s distribution area in January.

Monday Night Launches a Rebrand

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