Well that’s some good news for all the beer fans who’ve had to endure a dry lockdown. Maharashtra is now showing off its cool side! This after it has become the first ever state in India to allow the permanent sale of craft beer via growlers! Craft breweries are all set to up their production from the previous 2 lakh litres a year to 5 lakh litres now! The move comes after Karnataka passed a similar order. This allowed the sale of upto 2 litres of beer in growlers, to clear up their existing stocks.
Lockdown: a dry period
As the pandemic brought with it the impending lockdown, the brewery industry faced a huge setback. According to reports, 1.2 million cases of Indian-made foreign liquor (IMFL) worth Rs 700 crore were “stuck” in northern states. Though this couldn’t be helped as the sellers needed the nod of their respective state governments to clear this stock. However, with the lockdown restrictions, the drinks remained stagnant, around 8 lakh litres to be precise.
Craft beer in growlers
In an article by the Conde Nast Traveller, Nakul Bhonsle, Founder Great State Ale Works and President of Maharashtra chapter of the Craft Brewers Association of India (CBAI), was quoted saying “The introduction of growlers is something we have been pushing for, for about two years now. The lockdown came into effect and this stranded craft brewers across the country. When we spoke to the excise department once again, they were open to the idea considering the situation and our lack of access to the market.”
Consumers will now be able to access a growler-filling station and fill up their growlers. A container made of glass or ceramic, beer can be transported in these without any degradation in quality. This move now means that breweries will not be depending on restaurants for their sales. The craft beer in growlers will reach the consumer directly!
When is this to start?
Hold your horses folks! While the idea of these beer filling stations is a cool one, the infrastructure and the capital to set these up is another ball game. Reason being, these set-ups require special growler-filling taps to maintain the right carbonation in the beer. However, industry experts are certain that the returns will be much more than the investment. C’mon, everyone likes themselves a little growler! Micro breweries for now, can sell the existing beer stock in growlers, through restaurants . This system will be ready by the end of this week in Mumbai.