We’ve been preaching this for a while: Consistent quality is one of the most important progress points and pitfalls for the craft brewing industry. While every brewer will boast about best quality, not everyone has the proper tools to really ensure it. Some don’t have the labs. Some don’t have technicians. Some don’t have the correct processes in place. That could mean trouble. That could mean a customer might go out and have a bad experience with craft beer and generalize the segment as a whole. Every craft brewery needs to be conscientious of that.
The Brewers Association Quality Ambassador Dick Cantwell is preaching that same message. You might remember Cantwell as the brewing brains behind Elysian Brewing Co., which he left as kind of a craft beer maverick. Like a boss, he resigned from Elysian when it was bought by Anheuser-Busch, unhappy with the sale and saying fairly badass things like this:
“In the past few months AB has treated me with consideration and seriousness, and they’ve presented me some pretty exciting future possibilities, should I be able to see my way clear to working for them. But I can’t. I am a craft brewer, past, present and future, no matter what I end up doing. Naturally I’m not one to whine about the Definition, about being on the wrong side of it, etc. I helped craft the thing while I was on the BA Board, and while I have my own personal reservations about some aspects, I think it’s important to recognize some differences in realms of the market.”
Cantwell is as craft as it comes, and now he’s hoping to help you (craft brewer) take your brand and the industry to the next level. Watch the video above. Then, ask the Brewers Association about ensuring your quality processes. Ensure your raw ingredients are clean. Keep accurate records about cleaning and brewing. Use labs and plan for bad batches of beer (the video: “If you aren’t budgeting for some destruction of beer, you aren’t serious about quality.”). It’s a lot of great insight. Watch it above.