2020 Craft Brewing Trends

Local: 
Brewing will continue to move closer and closer to home.  On-site brewing will continue to grow as the small(er) tank sizes not only make it easy for establishments to produce their own finely tuned recipes, but also add a level of differentiation to their establishment.  Whether it is a bar, restaurant, golf course, casino, resort, cruise ship, beer is going local. Local ingredients will continue to define this growing niche.  Expect some very interesting brews/collaborations that are as unique as the community. This also reduces costs by avoiding three-tiered distribution. The face of craft brewing will look more like gardening and less like perusing the produce section of the grocery store. Home grown artisan custom brews will continue to have a great year.

Low Calorie, High Variation:
Time to get that bathing suit body in order with lighter beers. Many new adjuncts wake up the previously dreary light beer segment. Low calorie beers and seltzers have been booming. In many cases, these lighter varieties take up as much as 1/3 of the beer coolers in stores!  Keep an eye out for even more lower calorie flavor options that take many new and exciting foundations like ciders, seltzers, malted beverages, and many more. Infusions will continue to be a large part of some of the new batches coming out in the second half of the year.  Smaller batches make it simple to experiment!  The traditional ales and lagers in particular (foundational beers) will get a face lift everything from fruits to spices, different grains, even wood chips.  The possibilities (and fun) are endless and it will be exciting to follow the transformation.

More IPAs:
The meteoric rise of IPAs has been all the rage the first portion of 2020. New brands and varieties will keep this segment interesting and the pine and citrus notes from the cascade hops will keep the back of your tongue guessing as they crank up the ABV limits as it seems like they do year after year. This will also help draw more people into the segment, and craft beer as a whole,  as it is an easy and accessible inroad.

Cheers!