business news in context, analysis with attitude

The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that in addition to having a great zoo and a vastly improved baseball team, San Diego also boasts three of the nation's top ten microbreweries.

"Even in the snootiest beer circles, San Diego is becoming known for its inventive beer culture, with local breweries battling to outdo each other by making bold and bitter beers that are loaded with alcohol," the paper reports. "So for local breweries, it would seem there is only one remaining hurdle: getting drinkers with less-discerning tastes to appreciate them."
KC's View:
Of course, these microbreweries are fighting a battle against the stagnant marketplace that we mentioned in the Gordon Biersch story above, not to mention competition from giants such as Anheuser-Busch. But what stands out in the article is the fact that a plethora of brewers aren't letting tough competition and a rough marketplace get them down - they're developing new and interesting products and getting them in front of consumers, trusting that hard work, ingenuity and a quality product will be enough to attract new shoppers.

We think that's a good lesson for every retailer to learn. It's one of the reasons we do these kinds of stories - they provide inspiration about competing with giants…at least to us.

Of course, there's another reason that this story intrigued us. IRI has been promoting its Reinventing CPG Summit 2004 here on MNB…and we note that it is taking place in San Diego. We may have to sample some of the city's unique offerings…carbs be damned!

After all, as writer Dave Barry once said, "Without question, the greatest invention in the history of mankind is beer. Oh, I grant you the wheel was also a fine invention, but the wheel does not go nearly as well with pizza."