breaking news

'Pops, don't worry ... I'm doing the right thing' | Ex-Marine killed in Syria kept his mission secret from family

Brewers embrace hard cider


STEVENS POINT, Wis. — Brewers large and small are embracing hard cider, an alternative to beer and wine with a long history.

Hard cider, which is made by fermenting fresh apple juice, has seen a tremendous increase in shipments since 2005, most notably between 2011 and 2012.

It’s a small but fast-growing segment in the U.S. right now, said Eric Shepard, vice president and executive editor of trade publication Beer Marketers Insights.

Many brewers pair apple juice with other fruit flavors, often varied by season. The distinct, crisp apple flavor appeals to a wide variety of customers.

According to the Beer Institute, an industry group, the U.S. domestic and imported cider market was about 690,000 barrels in 2012, Shepard said. One barrel is equivalent to 31 gallons, or about 330 12-ounce bottles. Shepard also noted that cider shipments grew another 88 percent during the first quarter of 2013.

Consumers see hard cider as an alternative to beer, but the beverage is treated more like wine by regulators, Shepard said. Sales are often included with beer statistics, however, and the beverage is sold alongside beer in many outlets.

Some major breweries have grown their cider production through acquisitions. Others have created their own products.

In 2012 MillerCoors acquired Minneapolis-based Crispin Cider, Samuel Adams producer Boston Beer Co. launched Angry Orchard, and Anheuser-Busch launched Michelob Ultra Light Cider. Heineken also took over U.S. distribution of Strongbow cider, which is based in the U.K.

Other indications that hard cider is increasing in popularity come with the formation of the United States Association of Cider Makers at the third annual CiderCon in Chicago. And Hard Cider News, an online monthly newsletter, was founded in October 2012 to cover the hard cider industry’s products, events, data and recipes.

Hard cider is even creeping its way into beer festivals. Carlsberg Group-owned Somersby Cider was available for sampling at the Milwaukee Firkin Fest, a popular craft beer festival held in July.

A festival dedicated to hard cider, known as Pour the Core, has planned events this fall in Pennsylvania and New York.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Business

Shop smart for back-to-school: 10 helpful tips
Shop smart for back-to-school: 10 helpful tips

Wrapping up summer and transitioning back into school or college means it’s time for back-to-school shopping. Shopping for back-to-school items can be stressful and daunting if you don’t know what to look for or how to shop for the right deals. › RELATED: Find a suitable childcare service Although necessary, back-to-school...
Second norovirus case confirmed amid Chipotle food scare
Second norovirus case confirmed amid Chipotle food scare

A second person has tested positive for norovirus after visiting a Chipotle restaurant in Virginia earlier this month, health department officials said. The Loudoun County Health Department in Virginia says it also identified more than 135 who reported becoming ill after visiting a Chipotle restaurant in Sterling, Va., during July 13 through 16. The...
Unemployment rates rise in Clark, Champaign counties
Unemployment rates rise in Clark, Champaign counties

The unemployment rate in Clark and Champaign counties jumped higher in June but remained nearly flat from the same time one year ago, according to a monthly report from the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services. The unemployment rate in Clark County was 5.2 percent in June, up from 4.4 percent in May. But the report showed similar results to June...
Robot vacum cleaner could collect data about users’ homes
Robot vacum cleaner could collect data about users’ homes

The maker of the Roomba robotic vacuum, iRobot, could collect data about the floor plans of customers’ homes. iRobot’s chief executive, Colin Angle, told Reuters that iRobot may begin selling floor plans of customers homes with Google, Amazon or Apple. The information would be sold to tech companies in a push to create “smart homes&rdquo...
Michael Kors to purchase Jimmy Choo
Michael Kors to purchase Jimmy Choo

Fashion brand Michael Kors announced that it has reached an aggreement to acquire to footwear and accessories brand Jimmy Choo for $1.3 billion. The transaction has been approved by the boards of directors of both Michael Kors and Jimmy Choo, according to a company statement. Jimmy Choo has approximately 150 company-operated retail stores, 560 multi-brand...
More Stories