CRAZY FOR CANS
Don’t look now but cans are cool. Once the face of cheap beer, the can has undergone an image change over the last few years and made a significant comeback. Almost 53 percent of the beer consumed in 2O11 was served in an aluminum can, up from a low of 48 percent in the years leading to the economic slump that began in 2OO7. After peaking at 6O percent in 1991, the can’s popularity gave way to bottles and glasses as imports ruled the beer industry. The can trend was jumpstarted several years ago when retro drinkers made iconic PBR its beer of choice. But it is the recession and the continued growth of craft breweries which have really propelled the can’s popularity. Although cash-conscious drinkers have increasingly turned to cans, the increased focus by craft brewers on cans has definitely made them uber-trendy. Not only are cans more economical for small brewers, they leave a smaller footprint and keep damaging light rays from infiltrating. As of the end of 2O1O, there were 1693 breweries in the US, an increase of more than 2OOO percent from the mid-198Os.