Demand for stout products grew by 13% at Tesco in 2017, which was almost twice the growth for lager in the same period, the retailer said in a press release.
Tesco stout buyer Hugo Murray said, “British beer tastes are now wider than they have ever been, and as a result, brewers are taking notice of the craft beer trend and are starting to add a stout to their beer portfolio.
“In the last five or so years, a younger audience of drinkers has emerged, who are looking for beers with great character and exceptional flavour to challenge the taste buds – perhaps to have at the dinner table, as an accompaniment to food, much the same as wine,” added Murray.
The retailer also claims that stout has become one of the fastest-growing beer varieties in the UK.
The popularity of stout dwindled at the end of the twentieth century, after the arrival of lager.
According to law firm RPC, the craft-beer boom has resulted in new trademarks for beer brands, rising by 20% in 2017, up from 1,983 in 2016, to 2,372 last year.
Presently, Tesco stocks around ten different varieties of stouts to meet customers’ demands, and it sources from small UK craft brewers, which are adding new varieties to their range of beers.
These include a West Yorkshire-based brewer, Vocation, which manufactures a blueberry- and waffle-flavoured stout called Breakfast Club, in collaboration with Yeastie Boys.
The managing director of Vocation, Richard Stenson, said, “For a long time, the craft-beer market has been all about IPA, but we're beginning to see an interest in other styles that have previously been sidelined – none more so than stout.
“With the addition of flavourings like vanilla, butterscotch, blueberries, cherry, chocolate [and] chilli, stout has got very interesting and is getting the attention of consumers who previously thought it wasn’t for them,” added Stenson.
© 2018 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Dayeeta Das. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.