‘The thirst for craft beer shows no sign of slowing down’

Tesco introduces its largest ever craft beer range, including sour beers

Tesco introduces its largest ever craft beer range

UK supermarket giant Tesco has announced its largest ever craft beer range, with products coming from the UK, US, Japan, Sweden and elsewhere around the world. 

Annual growth for sales of craft beer in Tesco stores has increased by more than 40%, and the supermarket says sour beers are likely to raise interest even further in the future.

Craft brewers with listings in Tesco include BrewDog (Scotland); Brooklyn (US), Goose Island (US), Hitachino (Japan), Samuel Adams (US) and St Austell (England).

How did Tesco decide which beers to include?

Despite a huge cull of products across its F&B shelves in 2015 (the number of product lines was cut by 30% in order to simplify choice for consumers), Tesco’s craft beer offer is, in contrast, being increased by nearly a third.

There are now more than 70 beers in shops throughout the UK.

Chloe Harrison, Tesco craft beer buyer, said that craft beer is one area where consumers do want a large amount of choice.

“Craft beer is seeing huge growth in both the on and off trade and we have updated our range to offer customers a wider choice of products,” she told BeverageDaily. 

“Craft beer drinkers tend to enjoy experimenting with a variety of different flavours and styles and are increasingly interested in the story behind the breweries.

“We are offering our customers a wider choice of craft beers from both little-known and highly recognisable breweries in a variety of flavours and styles, and are confident they will enjoy the selection.”

She added that the range has been compiled by ‘scouring the globe’ to offer products that satisfy all tastes.

Tesco’s craft beer breweries include:
  • Anchor, US
  • Belhaven, Scotland
  • Blue Moon, US
  • BrewDog, Scotland
  • Brew York, England
  • Brooklyn, US
  • Drydate, Scotland
  • Fourpure, England
  • Flying Dog, US
  • Goose Island, US
  • Hitachino, Japan
  • Innis and Gunn, Scotland
  • Meantime, England
  • Nogne O, Norway
  • Oskar Blues, US
  • Pistonhead, Sweden
  • Redwell, England
  • Samuel Adams, US
  • Sierra Nevada, US
  • St Austell, England
  • Stone Go To, US
  • Stone, US
  • Thornbridge, England
  • Vedett, Belgium
  • Whitstable Bay, England
  • Vocation, England
  • West Beers, Scotland
  • Wolf Warning, Sweden

“There is a huge variety of craft beers on the market at the moment, so we tried to reflect this wide selection on our shelves.

“We offer a large variety of beer styles from double-brewed lagers, Pilsners (Vocation Brewery’s Yakima Pilsner), Wheat Beers, IPAs, Fruit flavoured Pale Ales, a Coffee Stout from Redwell Brewery (Norwich) and most interestingly the first sour beer to hit supermarket shelves – Tart from Thornbridge Brewery in Derbyshire.

“We are thrilled to support our local breweries across the UK but also wanted to bring in some of the best examples from the rest of the world to complement and diversify the range.”

Craft beer is popular with both millennials and older drinkers looking for a more artisan experience, Harrison added.

Sour brews

Tesco also says it is becoming the first major retailer to stock sour beers: intentionally acidic and tart beers that are most commonly seen in Belgium.

“We think that sour brews are destined to become the next frontier for beer lovers, in the same way that golden ale helped convert die hard lager lovers over to light and refreshing ales,” said Harrison.  

Tesco’s tart sour beer is priced at £1.90 and is available in store and online.

It has a golden color, white head with a combination of citrusy hops and hints of grapefruit and lemon, and has an ABV of 6%.

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