Sydney’s Modus Operandi Brewing Co is mixing things up, bringing a new look and flavour to its core range.
Modus today announced changes to its core-range lineup, removing its Session IPA and Silent Knight Porter and adding a brand new beer called the Wippa Snippa Session Pale. The porter will still be available in keg on a seasonal basis. The brewery has also decided to downsize its core range beers from 500ml cans down to 375ml cans in an effort to be more “available” and “accessible” to its fans.
Modus co-founder Grant Wearin told Brews News that the changes have helped to broaden the brewery’s appeal within its core range.
Wearin said that the 500ml format can be unfamiliar to the uninitiated consumer.
“As people make that step from ‘mass-produced’ beers and into ‘better’ beer, the 375ml vessel is a familiar one,” he explained.
“Anything in a 500ml can can be unfamiliar and so 375ml cans will be a positive move in that smaller, on-premise channel.
He said that while growth didn’t drive the change, “there’s probably a small element of that familiarity piece, in that on-premise customers tend to shy away from anything unfamiliar”.
Wearin said that the changes have also come after certain murmurings have been made in overseas markets with regards to larger format, higher ABV beers.
“In the UK, there’s a bit of a regulation debate at the moment, in particular towards higher ABV alcoholic drinks and what size vessel they’re in.
“Thinking forward, locking the future of this business away for many years to come, we needed to make a decision sooner rather than later and we didn’t want to be forced to make it by regulators if that’s the path that it took.”
Wearin said that while he doesn’t have the same regulatory concerns for the Australian market, regulation in the alcohol industry, in general, is something you have to plan your business around.
He told Brews News that at 3.8%, the Wippa Snippa Pale follows a “little bit of a trend” for people to drink lower ABV beers.
“We’ve pulled together what we’ve learnt over the past six years in brewing lower alcohol beers and put as much flavour into a smaller ABV package as we can.
“We’ve taken a bit of a different tact and haven’t tried to hit that 3.5% ABV mark that brewers seem to be fixated on at the moment.”
He said while there is a slight excise relief on 3.5% beers in keg, there is no difference in package.
Wearin said that Modus will continue its 500ml cans for some of its limited-release beers.
Modus’ new cans will be rolling out nationally, state by state from March, with a launch party at Sydney’s Slims Rooftop at Hyde Park House on February 28. Cans will be available exclusively from Modus HQ from Friday, March 1.