Monday, February 4, 2008

Higher Beer Prices - How Will It Affect You?

Beer PricesPrices for beer continue to go up. Has it hit you yet?

As the worldwide shortage of hops and some malts are driving up supply prices for brewers, they are starting to pass along the costs to the consumers. There's no getting around it any longer. With hop prices up nearly 400% and some malt prices doubled, the average six-pack is going up around one dollar in many places. Even the single 22 ounce bomber bottles will see about a 50 cent increase. For the beer connoisseur who enjoys sampling as many craft beers as possible, this could really start affecting how much money is left in the old beer jar at the end of the month.

For example, let's say you like to buy craft beers and typically spend around $8 per six-pack. If you bought one six-pack per week, that would cost you around $416 in a year. But with the extra buck tacked on, you're spending $9 a week and your beer fund will now require $468 a year to fund.

While some brew fans will pay whatever it takes to get their favorite brews on a regular basis, some folks may opt to revert back to a cheaper, more mass market beer like Coors, Miller, or Bud.

While everything in this world is costing more these days and salaries are not keeping up with inflation, it's going to boil down to a matter of choice as to what we decide to buy these days.

Personal plea: Please don't bend to pressure. Refuse to buy the mass market swill even though it's cheaper. Continue to buy quality craft beers from around your local region and support your local craft brewers.

Will you be buying less beer than you do now due to higher prices? While you may consider cutting back on a few things, cutting back on craft beer may slowly start happening as people's wallets start shrinking, but studies show in hard times alcohol is one commodity that people keep buying.

But cheer up! In America, the US Government wants to send us all checks for several hundred dollars to help kick start the economy. They expect us to spend it. So what do we intend to do with those checks? Consider this: instead of spending it on high tech gadgets that were all made overseas, why not put some of that back into your local craft breweries instead? If we spend our government checks on local businesses that produce goods here locally, you'll be helping out your economy much more than if you spend it on foreign made items. For many, that means local craft beers can continue to be in our shopping carts this year.

Support Your Local BrewerySupply shortages will be with us for another season. Depending on how the crops do this year we may have to endure higher prices for some time, if not permanently. Blame it on the growing demand for bio-fuels and farmers dropping other crops to grow corn. Hop and malt farming isn't as profitable as corn farming. We may see supply shortages get worse before they get better. Let's just hope electric cars become more mainstream soon so that farmers won't have to reserve as much acreage to corn.

Related articles:
- Hop shortages cause rising beer prices.
- How much are you paying for beer these days?

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