When it comes to any business endeavor, there are always two aspects that you should focus on: running the technical operations and creating your best-selling products. Any entrepreneur will need to have a good grasp on that first aspect to get their business off the ground, but the latter aspect is where the differences come in.
Most businesses either sell a product or offer a service. It’s very rare for small businesses to offer both unless they have been in the industry for quite some time and have racked up enough revenue to scale. Otherwise, the practical route to entrepreneurship is to pick one option and focus on growing that.
In this case, you’re planning to start a craft brewery business to showcase your talents and skills. It’s not impossible to create a cult following for good beer, especially not if you can sell high-quality products at an affordable time. Like the act of drinking beer, all you have to do is to keep selling it so that your market can acquire the taste.
However, before you go and start selling craft beer, you will first have to cover the basic grounds. This can include the equipment you’ll be using, the ingredients for your beer, and the expert knowledge of the brewing process. Here’s a more in-depth explanation for these three aspects of starting a craft beer business:
Having the Right Equipment
It can be difficult to purchase top-notch equipment in bulk, especially if you lack the budget to fund it. However, you can’t start selling beer if you can’t make beer, so the best way to approach this dilemma is to start small, but that depends on your specific business goals. What you don’t want to do is overspend on your brewing system, or, at least, not right at the beginning.
Focus on establishing your roots in the industry first before you consider dominating the market. To do this, you will also need other pieces of equipment to brew your craft beer. The brewhouse is the collective term for all the vessels you will need to start brewing commercially, and the general rule of thumb is to have enough vessels to last you two to three years of production.
This can include the Hot Liquor Tank where the water gets heated, the Mash/Lauter Tun where the milled grain gets saturated, and the Boil Kettle that turns into a Whirlpool to separate the liquids from the solid ingredients. After this process, the cooled solution will be transferred into the Fermenting Vessel.
In this vessel, the yeast is then added to transform the sugars into alcohol, where it will sit for a few days to a few weeks. Once the fermentation process is over, the brewed beer can now be transferred into the Brite Tank, before being kegged or bottled and distributed for public consumption.
Getting Good Suppliers
In a nutshell, beer is composed of malt, water, yeast, and hops. Those ingredients are all you need to create great-tasting craft beer that is surefire for success. But although this brewing process may look very simple, the success of your business will still boil down to the quality of your ingredients.
Refined techniques and excellent equipment can only do so much, especially if the quality of your raw ingredients isn’t good. That is why you must get your ingredients from trusted suppliers that know their way around the industry so that you can rest assured that you’re getting the best of the best.
The process of choosing your suppliers for malt, yeast, hops, and other flavorings may take some time, but it can be well worth the effort. This is because getting the right ingredients from good suppliers can be your standard for quality, which will help you build your brand in the industry.
With good suppliers, you can also get to explore their product line to make unique concoctions. For instance, you might find suppliers that offer AU Enigma brewing hops, which can offer your craft beer a complex flavor profile. This enigma is truly unique because it has hints of Pinot Gris, redcurrants, and other light tropical fruits that can offer a new experience to the taste buds of your patrons.
Honing Expert Knowledge
Reaping success from a business isn’t only dependent on your expertise in managing a business, it also comes from your knowledge of the craft itself. You can’t become a craft brewer if you don’t know the process behind making good beer or what it takes to achieve that quality level.
This means that before you decide to start a craft beer business, you will need to learn beyond the basics. For starters, you can get valuable experience from working at an established brewery, or you can take formal training programs to know more about the craft.
Of course, there are many other aspects that you have to cover before you can actualize your dreams of being a craft brewer. There are the financial costs, legal matters, licenses, and logistics, to name a few. But those are only challenging in the beginning, and they surely shouldn’t stop you from starting your craft beer business altogether.