According to Advertising Age, the world’s largest retailer is jumping on the craft beer bandwagon and adding more space in its stores for craft brews.
Walmart, [CEO Lee] Scott added, “built the company on two things: One was price, but the other was assortment, and you can’t take an area like beer where people are moving to craft and ‘under-assort’ yourself because the person who is buying craft beer and wants that assortment will drive to Kroger and pay the 15% more.”
Local store managers will have a say in what beers are stocked which means there is a chance that regional breweries could get some shelf space and not just the craft beer made by the macros.
Of course, Walmart isn’t doing this because they like craft beer. They are simply following the money.
While craft beer still only commands about 5% of the beer market, these smaller, mostly regional brands are the only bright spot in beer, growing at a 14% clip compared with a 2% decline in the overall beer category, experts said at the convention.
I sincerely hope this helps the smaller breweries and not just the big boys. Everyone has heard about the Mom & Pop businesses that went belly up because they couldn’t compete with Wally World. Hopefully this will help the Mom & Pop breweries compete, rather than extend the reach of the craft division of the macro breweries.