Cold activated bottles, “Frost Brew” techniques, the alcoholic cordial Rekorderlig, the Andre Rieu of witbeers – Blue Moon – and the dismissal of its own flagship beer, Arvo, in two lines…judging by the media release it will be a very interesting time in the world of uninteresting drinks as Coca Cola Amatil returns to the beer market today.
With plenty of time to have prepared for today’s re-entry, forced when SABMiller purchased CUB and dissolved its partnership with CCA in 2011, expect a huge marketing push for the brands while not expecting much excitement from the products themselves.
OK, so Blue Moon may not be nausea-inducing like the overwrought violinist, in fact it is well-made and drinkable, but it is still polished to the point of near characterlessness but for the citrus character more reminiscent of orange-scented laundry liquid than any Belgian wit I have ever tried. And that’s before the huge and highly theatrical slice of orange enters the glass. Watch out for a podcast featuring an interview with Blue Moon’s Keith Villa later this week.
Anyway, a third major player in the market, fourth if you include Coopers, sixth if you include the two large retailers, will provide plenty of competition – but competition in the aspirational part of the beer market. This is the rapidly growing segment of the beer market that is a half step above the traditional premium lager market in terms of flavour, but with enough craft branding to let the drinker justify their choice as being more discerning, while not actually altering their consumption patterns or drastically changing their taste preferences. While they can be labelled as ‘gateway beers’, and marketers love that term, for most drinkers they are the end of the journey, not the start of one. And that’s ok too. [MK]
Watch this space…
Back in Beer and Cider
Sydney Tuesday 17th December 2013
Coca-Cola Amatil (CCA) is proud to announce its return to the Australian beer and cider market today, with the launch of international and local premium beers and cider – almost all of them new to the Australian market.
The portfolio, on tap and on sale today, includes Molson Coors’ leading beers Coors, and Blue Moon, the USA’s biggest craft beer. These are joined by new draught beer brand, Alehouse, in both full and mid strength, which is exclusive to on-premise customers; ARVO Premium Lager and Pressman’s Original Australian Cider, all crafted in the Australian Beer Company brewery at Griffith in joint partnership with Casella. This portfolio will be joined in early 2014 by the internationally best-selling Rekorderlig Cider from Sweden, the Samuel Adams range of beers made by the USA’s number one craft brewer, The Boston Beer Company and CCA’s Fiji portfolio of Fiji Bitter and Vonu beer.
The premium beer and cider portfolio joins CCA’s well-established range of premium Beam Global Spirits, including the best-selling Jim Beam & Cola, which CCA has been manufacturing, selling and distributing since 2007, as well as the new Cascade range of adult sparkling non-alcoholic beverages designed for the on-premise market .
As well as welcoming to Australia global brands Blue Moon and Coors, one of the world’s Top 10 beer brands, we’re also welcoming the innovative all-Australian exclusive on-premise draught Alehouse beers, Original Pale Draught and Summer Gold, brewed by the Australian Beer Company team. The team has a combined expertise of 66 years in brewing, and is led by Brew Master Andy Mitchell, who brings a wealth of knowledge from 34 years crafting beer in large and small breweries in South Africa (see attachment).
Terry Davis, CCA’s Group Managing Director said: “I am delighted with the progress our team has made executing agreements with some of the world’s best-performing beer and cider brands, and in developing our own all-Australian brands as well.
“Australia is one of only six markets in the world with a billion-dollar profit pool for beer, so the earnings growth for CCA for a successful execution of our new portfolio is substantial.”
John Murphy, CCA Australia’s MD Beverages, said: “Our customers have been waiting for us to get back into beer and cider, and I know how much excitement there is in the trade with the arrival of the Molson Coors range, particularly Blue Moon, which has taken the US by storm becoming the number one selling craft beer in the last 12 months. I am also confident that our customers will welcome the chance to try our bespoke Alehouse range, brewed in our Australian Beer Company brewery under the leadership of master brewer Andy Mitchell.
“CCA is now truly a one-stop shop for our customers, with our beer and cider brands completing our portfolio of fantastic Beam Global spirits and RTDs, our leading adult sparking non-alcoholic brand Cascade and our iconic Coca-Cola trademark brands.”
Brett Vye, Chief Commercial Officer, Global License Molson Coors said: “This is a market that we’ve always thought was a great fit for our beers. Australia is one of the world’s most profitable beer markets, and we have found the right partner in CCA. Our initial focus will be on Coors and Blue Moon Belgian White, but there are many supplementary brands that could be introduced in time.”
David Coors, Molson Coors General Manager of Australasia said: “Thanks to its heritage, uncompromising brewing standards and its dedication to offer beer drinkers the coldest most refreshing beer, Coors, which is known in the US and global markets as Coors Light, is one of the fastest growing beers around the world and among the 10 largest brands by volume.
“You’ll notice Coors has ‘Cold Activated’ labels that tell consumers when their beer is cold and ready to be enjoyed at peak refreshment. It is an innovation that has driven growth for the brand around the world.”
John Casella, Managing Director of Casella Wines said: “The Australian Beer Company marks an exciting new chapter for Casella and our expansion into beer and cider. We are very excited about the portfolio of products we are launching under the Australian Beer Company. Proudly crafted in Australia, we believe they will provide consumers with an appealing choice of premium beer and cider products to include within their drinking repertoire.
“We look forward to building and producing new brands with CCA, and expanding our operations further through the formation of our partnership.”
The new range of premium beer including Coors and Blue Moon and cider brands will be available at a range of national and independent retailers in time for Christmas. Draught products will be ranged nationally across 250 taps before Christmas.
Brands in the market today: Coors; Blue Moon; Alehouse Original Pale Draught; Alehouse Summer Gold; ARVO Lager; Pressman’s Original Australian Cider. These will be joined by Rekorderlig Cider; Fiji Bitter; Vonu and the Samuel Adams range of beers made by The Boston Beer Company in early 2014.
NOTES TO EDITORS:
An ASX Top 30 listed company, CCA is one of Australia’s largest premium branded beverage and food companies and one of the world’s top five Coca-Cola bottlers with territories in Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, Fiji, Papua New Guinea and Samoa. CCA has a premium spirits beverage business, with a portfolio which includes the premium Beam Global brands, and it acquired the Fiji Brewery and distillery in Fiji and the Vailima Brewery in Samoa in 2012. On December 17 CCA will reenter the Australian beer and cider market with Molson Coors’ brands Coors and Blue Moon; The Boston Beer Company’s Samuel Adams and Alehouse draught beer and Pressman’s Cider from the Australian Beer Company, CCA’s joint venture with the Casella group. Rekorderlig Cider will join the portfolio in early 2014.
About Molson Coors Brewing Company
Molson Coors Brewing Company is a leading global brewer delivering extraordinary brands that delight the world’s beer drinkers. It brews, markets and sells a portfolio of leading premium brands such as Coors Light, Molson Canadian, Carling, Staropramen and Blue Moon across The Americas, Europe and Asia. It operates in Canada through Molson Coors Canada; in the US through MillerCoors; across Europe through Molson Coors Europe; and outside these core markets through Molson Coors International. In 2012, the company was listed on the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index and named global Beverage Sector Leader. Molson Coors is constantly looking for ways to improve its Beer Print. For more information on Molson Coors Brewing Company visit the company’s Web site, http://molsoncoors.com
Created by Adolph Coors, Coors began brewing beer in the town of Golden, Colorado in the Rocky Mountains back in 1873. Coors beer (known as Coors Light in the US and global markets outside Australia) is the #2 Beer in the United States and the World’s 10th largest Beer brand. The legendary Coors Brewery in Golden, Colorado still stands as one of the largest single-site breweries in the world. Coors is renowned for its light and refreshing characteristics and its heritage using pristine Rocky Mountains water from Colorado.
Coors uses a unique technique called “Frost Brew” where the beer is brewed below freezing for a crisp, refreshing taste, making it the World’s Most Refreshing Beer. Coors trademark 2-Stage cold certified bottle indicates when the beer goes from Cold to Super Cold by turning the Rocky Mountains on the label blue in colour. See www.coors.com.au
About Blue Moon
Blue Moon Belgian White is leading the way as the #1 Craft Beer brand in the US and continues to post double-digit growth there.
A refreshing, unfiltered and naturally cloudy wheat beer served with an orange slice, Blue Moon is a delicious handcrafted beer, brewed with oats for creaminess and spiced with a perfect combination of orange peel and coriander. The unique taste piques curiosity and stimulates all the senses of the drinker. www.bluemoonbrewery.com.au
About the Australian Beer Company:
The Australian Beer Company is a joint venture partnership between Casella and Coca-Cola Amatil (CCA). Established on 17thDecember 2013, the company has been formed to build, create and distribute premium beer brands and cider brands that will appeal to Australian consumers. Based at the state-of-the-art brewery in Griffith, New South Wales, the brand portfolio consists of ARVO Premium Lager, the Australian Beer Company’s Alehouse Original Pale Draught; Alehouse Summer Gold and Pressman’s Original Australian Cider.
ARVO Premium Lager is an easy drinking premium lager, with subtle hoppy characters with a touch of fresh fruitiness and a refreshing, crisp, clean finish. See www.arvobeer.com
About Alehouse Original Pale Draught and Alehouse Summer Gold
One of the first new products to be launched from the Australian Beer Company Alehouse is an exclusive ‘master brand’ only available to on-premise venues.
Launching with an ‘Original Pale Draught’ brewed from drum roasted barley for a crisp dry finish, it’s a big flavoured beer that has a floral aroma and citrus overtones with 4.2% ABV (alcohol by volume). This is supported by ‘Summer Gold Lager’ brewed from pale malt for a full flavoured mid strength beer at 3.5% ABV. Both beers have been designed from scratch with the Master Brewer Andy Mitchell at our new state of the art brewery located in Griffith.
About Pressman’s Original Australian Cider
Crafted in Australia using fresh apple juice, Pressman’s Cider is so clean and refreshing it’s akin to taking a bite out of a crisp orchard-fresh apple. A light, thirst quenching cider, with crisp apple notes dominating, Pressman’s is the ultimate in refreshment when served in a tall glass over ice.