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SAB to shut down SA craft beer industry?

Could a major move by one of the world's largest beer players spell the end of craft beer in South Africa?

01 Apr 2019

ALSO READ: South Africans buy more beer than vegetables - fact

SAB, South Africa’s biggest brewery, has evidently had enough of the country’s burgeoning craft beer scene and is thus putting some drastic plans in place to shut it down. 

“Yes it is about the craft beer industry eating into our profits”, said the Senior Vice President in charge of marketing at Anheuser-Busch InBev, sole owners of SABMiller. “But much more, it is about the image that tends to go with it”, was the startling revelation from the brewery that has a virtual monopoly of the beer industry.

Speaking exclusively to Food24, Ms Lirpa Loof, a Red and Yellow school marketing student currently doing her internship at SAB, said she felt compelled to make known to the public what she heard in a recent marketing brainstorm.

“We simply cannot have these pointy-bearded hipsters being the face of the industry,” continued the VP. The fact that traditionally English and German beers like the IPA and Weiss head up the contingent of craft beers in South Africa is also known to irk the national brewer.

“And most of these flipping hipsters suck on one beer all night! At R55 a beer, so would I. Also, anything more than one beer, and you will find yourself on the loo for the rest of the night,” was another quip heard by Ms Loof in the meeting held at SAB’s headquarters in Sandton. 

As such, SAB is planning on withdrawing all bottled stock, and removing all draft taps dispensing SAB beer, from all establishments that continue to stock any form of craft beer. It’s an unbelievably aggressive move that is bound to have craft beer producers up in arms. Given that 90% of beer sales at traditional pubs and restaurants in South Africa are via SAB products, it is unlikely that they will not accede to the request from SAB. But how will the competitions board react? 

Please note: This is an April Fools' Day article.

ALSO READ: 4 Best ways to start making your own beer

Read more on: beer  |  craft beer  |  drinks

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