Blake’s Beverage Co., which debuted in 2023 as the collaborative voice of three leading cider brands, Blake’s Hard Cider, Austin Eastciders, and AVID Cider Co., noted in a recent press release that it enters 2024 as the nation’s second largest cider company (behind Angry Orchard and Boston Beer). With each Blake’s brand celebrating its 10 year anniversary in 2023, the Blake’s Beverage Co. family earned its position as Michigan and Texas’ top-selling cider brands last year, reporting year-over-year growth, expanded distribution and ongoing investments in product innovation and brand development.
As Michigan’s leading cidery, Blake’s Hard Cider grew its total sales volume more than 10% last year and ranked as a Top 10 cidery in the United States. Blake’s Hard Cider’s annual growth is led by American Apple, which debuted as its first-released imperial cider in 2022. Blake’s tripled distribution of American Apple, an 8% ABV semi-sweet imperial cider, in 2023 and reported a rate of sale increase of 85% for the rapidly growing brand year-over-year.
Blake’s Hard Cider’s longtime flagship cider and sales leader Triple Jam, a 6.5% ABV semi-sweet cider made with real berries, also saw phenomenal growth in 2023, reaching a year-over-year sales increase of 24% in 2023. Growth of Triple Jam was supported by brand extensions in 2023, including the 4.5% ABV lite cider Jam Session. Blake’s will also introduce an imperial cider to the Triple Jam brand family in 2024.
Overall, Blake’s Hard Cider lineup includes seven of the Top 10 selling ciders throughout its home state of Michigan. Blake’s Hard Cider currently distributes to 29 states across the Midwestern, Southern, and Eastern US with plans to grow its footprint, innovate its product lineup, and support brand awareness with strategic retail activations in 2024.
Texas-based Austin Eastciders, which joined the Blake’s Beverage Company team in November 2023, earned its position as Texas’ top selling cidery last year, with its lineup making up seven of the Top 10 selling ciders throughout the Lone Star State. Austin Eastciders also joins Blake’s Hard Cider among the ranks of the Top 10 cider brands nationally, with distribution in 22 states throughout the Northeast, Southeast, and Southwest.
Austin Eastciders’ nearly 5% overall sales growth last year was supported by product and packaging innovations, including its best-selling variety packs and the addition of imperial ciders. Austin Eastciders’ Imperial Tropical Punch, which launched as the top-selling on-site package at Austin City Limits last year, grew a state-wide presence throughout Texas with the introduction of 4-packs of 19.2 oz cans. Born and nurtured in the Live Music Capital of the Word, Austin Eastciders will continue to add a Texan twist to its fruit-forward beverage portfolio with upcoming product innovations in 2024.
Washington-based Avid Cider Co., which represents Blake’s Beverage Company’s growing presence throughout the largest apple-growing region of the US, completed a multi-year expansion effort in 2023 with the move of its production facility to Redmond, Ore. Its new 15,000 sq. ft. facility supports the cidery’s six state distribution footprint in the Northwest.
Avid also released a lineup of imperial ciders in 2023, continuing its ongoing commitment to product innovation and a proven history of experimentation. The cidery will release an exciting lineup of non-cider fruit-forward beverages in 2024.
“We are excited to continue to grow the cider category with our three unique legacy brands that are all helping to move the cider category forward,” said Andrew Blake, CEO Blake’s Beverage Company. “Together we have a unique opportunity to tell the story of cider and showcase our fruit-forward, category-expanding innovation. We look forward to taking America’s apples to new and exciting heights in 2024.”
With a national footprint and cideries strategically located in all primary apple-growing regions of the US, Blake’s Beverage Company is the second largest cider company in the United States and is positioned for growth in 2024. The collaborative nature of the teams in the Blake’s Beverage Company family enhances their passion for bold, fruit-forward beverages, fresh ingredients, and a commitment to craft.