Independence Rings Loud | The New Little Logo On Our Packaging
In June 2017 the Craft Brewers Association launched a campaign to help differentiate independent beer from large national brands. This initiative was implemented to help beer consumers recognize independent brands by just glancing at the label. Following the industry trend, the big beer guys are disguising themselves as small craft beer. Their ability to employ expensive marketing campaigns and clever packaging makes it hard to tell the difference. The new Certified Independent Craft Logo fights back. It's a classic beer bottle turned upside down, to represent how craft and independent brewers have turned the beer game upside down in these last fifteen.
Who can have the logo on their label?
Of the 6,000 U.S. breweries operating today, 3,500 breweries are currently using the logo in some way or another–be it on their label, the design for a coaster, or even as a bumper sticker. To be a part of the Craft Brewers Association you must check off three boxes. Firstly, you must produce less than 6 million barrels of beer annually. Rohrbach Brewing Company produces just shy of 20,000 barrels of beer per year, which is still enough to fill an Olympic sized swimming pool, but we still have a few years before we need to worry about going over the limit.
Secondly, to use the seal, you must be Independent. The CBA defines independent beer as a company being less than 25 percent owned or controlled by a beverage alcohol industry member which is not itself a craft brewer. That's another box that Rohrbachs can check off, unless of course our owner, John Urlaub, is running a multinational distribution center out of his garage.
Lastly, to use the Independent Craft Brewers Seal, you must be traditional. Traditional in this sense means that a majority of our total alcoholic beverage volume must have beer flavors from traditional or innovative brewing ingredients and their fermentation. The good news is that we at Rohrbachs can check off that final box, the bad news is that also means we’ll probably never make a Buffalo Road Blueberry Hard Soda, since under this definition Flavored Malt Beverages are not considered beers.
So why does this matter?
The goal set out by the Craft Brewers Association was to get an easily recognizable symbol in front of consumers so that when they are making a beer purchase they think about supporting independent owners within their own communities. The more consumers support local breweries, the more owners are able to give back and in turn support those same communities. In 2016, local independent breweries were able to employ over 450,000 people. They gave nearly $75 million in charitable donations to their communities and contributed $67.8 billion to the US economy.
You'll see the seal on our latest seasonals and neoterics. An inside secret: it'll be updated on our classics in the coming months as we give the package design a little refresh. So next time you're shopping the beer cooler, make sure to look for the Independent Seal–just another reason to feel good about drinking good beer.