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How Craft Breweries Overcome Supply Chain Challenges

Learn how your craft brewery can overcome supply chain challenges in the wake of a global pandemic. Take steps to prepare now.

How Craft Breweries Overcome Supply Chain Challenges

During the COVID-19 lockdowns around the world, many industries experienced supply chain issues, including the craft beer sector.

Therefore, while supply chain issues have pretty much returned to normal generally, craft breweries are aware that they need to be prepared for any supply chain problems in the future.

The more prepared your brewery is for supply chain disruption, the easier it will be to navigate your way through the next storm – whether those supply chain issues are a global or national problem or whether the issues are a more specific local problem with companies in your current supply chain.

So, let us take a look at how your craft brewery can overcome supply chain challenges.

Find a Different Supplier

This may sound obvious, but one of the top ways of overcoming supply chain problems is to find a different supplier.

Whether the entire industry is experiencing a shortage or you are having problems with your specific supplier, such as the supplier taking too long to deliver inventory, look at other suppliers that you could switch to.

The same applies to other companies in your supply chain. If one link in your chain is causing you issues, it is best to switch.

Even if you are not currently experiencing supply chain issues, it is always a good idea to have backups in place.

Overall, find other potential suppliers you could work with to come up with a contingency plan.

Find Short-term Solutions

If you are unable to supply your beverages to wholesalers, businesses and individuals due to a temporary problem in your supply chain, you should find a short-term solution.

That simply means finding a company to deliver your products in a timely manner.

But that company does not necessarily have to be part of the industry. To deliver your products fast, you must think outside the box.

For example, you could call in a moving company to ship orders for you. Thankfully, it is easy to get quick moving quotes hassle-free when you use a reputable online comparison platform.

Another option is to simply rent trucks and hire drivers.

You will need to spend time working out costs to ensure such short-term solutions are financially viable, but if you need to supply products quickly due to unforeseen circumstances, finding other ways of delivering your beverages is a good idea.

Diversify Your Products

If your supply chain problem is due to a shortage of quality hops, perhaps because of excessive heat, you have the option to keep your brewery going by diversifying your products.

For example, you could consider brewing other styles or a hard seltzer. The hard seltzer market has been growing in recent years and it has not been impacted as much from the hop shortage that has occurred recently. You could even try brewing coffee beer!

If Canning Is a Problem, Reach Out to Local Businesses

If your problem is that you cannot can your beer due to supply chain issues, reach out to local businesses like bars and restaurants to see if they will take kegs from you.

The last thing you want is to waste good beer and see a nosedive in revenue, so finding new local buyers can be a great way to weather the storm.

It could be helpful to hire a sales assistant who can locate potential local businesses and sell your kegs on your behalf.

Stock Up

Lastly, it is a good idea to simply stock up on your inventory.

Order more cans and other items than you currently need. That way, if a major supply chain problem arises, you will still have stock that you can sell while you look at ways of resolving the supply chain issue.