This includes a variety of craft-style beverage categories that continue to skyrocket in terms of consumer demand and are expected to continue capturing market share.
Crown recognized the potential of the craft beer industry early on and has helped countless breweries expand their reach to consumers with metal packaging. There are several factors driving the adoption of the beverage can by the craft beer industry, including the inherent barrier properties that protect freshness and taste and printing techniques that enable brands to express their unique identities. Case in point: The Society of Independent Brewers (SIBA) Craft Brew Report 2022 indicates that the volume of its members’ beer going into cans has more than tripled since 2019.1
Like every industry, the beer market was impacted by the pandemic, but it seems to be on the rebound. For example, in the U.S. in 2021, overall U.S. beer volume sales were up 1%, while craft brewer volume sales grew 8%. This increased small and independent brewers’ share of the country’s beer market by volume to 13.1%, up from 12.2% the previous year.2 The figures mark a return to pre-pandemic norms when craft beer growth outpaced the overall beer market. In Europe, SIBA member breweries saw average production recover in 2021, after a dramatic fall in 2020, but it remains below 2019 levels.3
Cocktails and Mocktails
The portability and durability characteristics that make beverage cans so appealing in the craft beer category also apply to the cocktails segment. Consumers appreciate the convenience of a pre-mixed drink in a lightweight format that retains freshness and regulates temperature. Canned cocktails eliminate prep time and the burden of carrying multiple ingredients and tools. Ready-to-drink spirits represented $741 million in U.S. retail-store sales in 2021 through Dec. 25, more than double the sales over the same period a year earlier.4 A NielsenIQ Global Snapshot report shows the rise of pre-mixed cocktails has global appeal, with Europe showing an 11.7% increase in sales for pre-mixed beverages from 2020 to 2021.5
Consumption of mocktails, which provide a liquor-free alternative to popular libations like the gin and tonic or Moscow mule, is also on the rise. As reported by NielsenIQ, sales of non-alcoholic beverages rose 33.2% in the last year, with $331 million in total sales. Non-alcoholic beer and cider sales grew by 31.7%, but more notably sales of non-alcoholic spirits grew 113.4% during the same period.6