The Dutch beer drinker are increasingly opting for a special beer instead of regular beer. Why? And how can it be that there are still new flavours to recover?
Pils is still the undisputed leader in the shelf, but specialty beers are fast becoming the leader of the throne. From the annual National Bieronderzoek of Dutch Brewers shows that four out of five beer drinkers sometimes beer to drink.
The sale of beer in supermarkets rose in 2018, with 10 percent. The sale of types of India Pale Ale (IPA) even with 20 percent.
We want something special, a verwenmoment
Since 2005, the popularity of specialty beers is exploding. Not entirely coincidentally, around the same time that people are more conscious with their food and drink deal.
“That trend to be aware of food results in more demand for craft products of good quality, preferably locally produced,” says biersommelier Henri Reuchlin, coordinator of the StiBON Bieropleiding. “You see that with other foods. Used to be you had brown and white bread, now you have a whole shelf full of speltbollen, sourdough bread, maisbrood and so on.”
According to Reuchlin, is the nowadays, consumers are almost insatiable when it comes to new tastes and trends. “Actually, we want each time we look at the supermarket or pub running again to be surprised by something new,” he says. “Because beer is already a product, that effect is even stronger.”
A simply ‘beer’ is not exciting more
A simply ‘beer’ is so not exciting anymore. Social media also play a role. On the one hand because it is for brands easier is their special products,” says Reuchlin. On the other hand, because the latest taste sensation from a hip brewery from near it’s more fun doing it on Facebook or Instagram than a normal beer.
Thomas Gesink, marketing manager of Brewery De Prael, saw its audience is changing. “In the past, were mainly men at the age that liked in addition to their beer, a beautiful Herfstbok to taste. Now our tasting room, packed with a trendy, young audience that likes new flavors to try.”
Why do we drink beer?
- We have chosen for the special products that a verwenmoment create
- There is a great interest for local products, where small breweries to respond
- The rise of social media allows for better promotion (by brands and consumers)
Smaakinnovatie small breweries
Especially small breweries will benefit from that rising popularity of specialty beers. According to figures from the Foundation Heritage Dutch Beer culture, there were 675 breweries in 2018. In 2005, there were 91.
“Consumers each season a new, special taste to the beer drinking, we have largely due to the small breweries,” says Reuchlin. Where large breweries focus on technological progress, such as saving energy, running small breweries at the forefront of smaakinnovatie.
The reason for this is simple: pils may then be considered as ‘normal’, it is for brewers, the most difficult beer to make. “Mainly because of the considerable investment in equipment required. Big breweries can make that easier to recoup by beer in large quantities to make,” says Reuchlin.
Chocoladebier and beer from rainwater
“Our – are constantly developing new flavours and experiment with existing flavors. So we have two years ago the water in our best-sellers beer replaced by filtered rainwater. That beer, Code Blond, took out even the world. Also our limited edition, Chocolate Milk Stout, in collaboration with Tony’s Chocolonely, was a hit,” says Gesink.
Will there ever be an end to that supply of new flavours? Probably not. “There are so many beer styles, and beer styles you can experiment through the ingredients locally or very far away to buy. Continue to beer brewers surprise,” says Gesink.
Anyway, see you on the other hand also a certain experimenteermoeheid occur, suggests Reuchlin. “People return back to the old or the new classics, the beers of which they certainly know that they are good.”