What a difference a handful of weeks can make. Last we wrote about craft in natl Nielsen data, volume sales were up just 0.6% and $$ were up less than 3% YTD thru Jul 1 (see CBN Vol 8, #59). And for those 4 wks, volume slipped 0.5% and $$ up just 1%. But suddenly, craft segment is back to mid-single-digit growth in latest 4 wks thru Jul 15 in Nielsen data: volume up 4% and $$ up 5%, suggesting a much improved period of sales surrounding July 4 weekend for craft. By adding first couple weeks of July, craft’s YTD volume trend improved by more than 1 full pt up to 1.7% gain thru Jul 15. Still no great shakes, but a notable improvement.
One key aspect of improving craft segment trend is that Blue Moon Belgian White – included in Nielsen craft data set – is on fire. Blue Moon Belgian White $$ and volume sales grew 17% for latest 4 wks, snagging 0.9 share of craft volume to 8.2. Also, Sam Adams (volume -17%), Sierra Nevada (-6.5%) and Shock Top (-10%) declines were not quite as steep. And Leinie Shandy (+6%) and New Belgium (+3%) had solid growth. But altogether, these 6 craft brand families had net-decline of 2% on volume, -1.5% on $$ for 4 wks thru Jul 15. All Other craft cos below these top-6 cos collectively picked up steam, with volume up 8%, $$ up 9% for 4 wks.