California-based craft beer maker, Stone Brewing, is off to a hot start in 2017, reporting 18% growth versus the prior year. Stone’s performance is far outpacing both the year-to-date, IRI-stated grocery craft category growth of 4.4% and the category’s 52-week growth rate of 6.4%.
Stone Brewing’s explosive growth is fueled by its core beers both familiar and new. First, the familiar stalwart Stone IPA, launched 20 years ago and refreshed just over a year ago, is up 8.2% demonstrating continued opportunity to convert more hop heads to its iconic West Coast style. Relative newcomer, Stone Delicious IPA, launched nationally in 2015, is up a whopping 142% over the same period. Stone buttressed these core beer advancements with two new year-round beers: Stone Ripper and Stone Tangerine Express IPA.
Launched in southern California in December and nationally in January, Stone Ripper is one of the top five new six-packs in US Food according to IRI. And launched in late January, Stone Tangerine Express IPA depletions year-to-date make it both the fifth largest draft IPA brand and the hottest new 22oz.
Rounding out its quarter one performance is Stone’s seasonal mixed pack offering. The Stone All IPA Mixed Pack, including four different IPAs: Stone Pataskala Red X IPA, Stone Ruination Double IPA 2.0, Stone Delicious IPA and featuring an in-pack exclusive, first-ever Stone Hop Revolver IPA is up 14.7%.
“2017 is off to a great start for Stone Brewing both on premise and off premise and it‘s showing us that craft beer fans nationwide appreciate our genre-defining styles of IPAs and our new complementary San Diego style Pale Ale – in Stone Ripper,” said Dominic Engels, Stone Brewing CEO. “In a category that seems to be talking more and more about slowdown, we are pleased to be talking about continued double-digit growth.”
Stone Brewing Distribution is expected to expand availability to all states, in addition to District of Columbia and Puerto Rico by May. On the international front, they are in 35 countries, including more than 20 in Europe, plus Australia, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, Thailand, Costa Rica and more. Stone Brewing – Berlin in its first full year is on pace to brew and sell over 20,000 Hectoliters.
“It’s been really amazing to see the traction on a global basis with fans and retailers thus far,” added Engels. “We’re excited as we look toward the horizon with even more expansion and distribution plans across the European market and beyond.”
Stone Brewing was recently recognized by RateBeer with awards in six categories, including being named “Best Brewery in California”. On August 18-19, they will celebrate the Stone 21st Anniversary Celebration & Invitational Beer Festival, in San Marcos, CA.
Founded by Greg Koch and Steve Wagner in 1996, the groundbreaking San Diego-based Stone Brewing is the 9th largest craft brewer in the United States. Recognized as an industry leader, Stone has been listed on the Inc. 500 | 5000 Fastest Growing Private Companies list 12 times, has been called the “All-time Top Brewery on Planet Earth” by BeerAdvocate magazine twice, and was named the “Top Rated Brewer in California” by RateBeer Best in January 2017. The multifaceted company is the first American craft brewer to independently build, own and operate their own brewery in Europe (Berlin, Germany), and also opened a production brewery in Richmond, Virginia in 2016. Known for its bold, flavorful and largely hop-centric beers, Stone has earned a reputation for brewing outstanding, unique beers while maintaining an unwavering commitment to sustainability, business ethics, philanthropy and the art of brewing…and pledging never, ever, to sell out to the man.