There have been a couple reviews of 2020, and well…they are a thing.
It’s been pretty weird pandemic for business and craft beer enjoyment at large, but it’s neat to see the places that people pivoted to a different method of production.
That said: I wish we’d just close everything for two months, pay everyone to stay home and start over in March.
This post from Jeff Alworth is about a month old, but given the closing of Grixen brewing this Sunday, it still feels appropriate: because it’s bad.
It’s really bad.
And while the lens that I’m looking at the universe through involves craft beer, what I want to emphasize is that this is just a slice of what other industries and people are going through and none of is good. We rely on so much to make our lives as rich as they are…and a lot of the people who take on that work are being given the most difficult challenges they’ve faced.
It is, as the late Don Younger said, not about the beer, but it’s about the beer.
NPR did a story about what beer sales are telling us about the impact the pandemic/recession is having on the beer industry.
One element that stood out to me, though was this:
“You know, we didn’t really see craft or imports or super premium lose share in the last recession,” he says. That’s because, he says, the recession didn’t inflict as much pain on the class of people who tend to drink Session IPAs, artisanal Porters, Belgian Lambics and Saison pale ales. Likewise, in this pandemic and recession, craft beer drinkers are more likely to have the luxury of working remotely, keeping their jobs and spending a few extra bucks on beverages with flavor.
Now, on the one hand I’m thrilled that craft beer has been doing well. All things considered, well, anyway.
On the other hand, I cannot help but notice how the group of people who are able to support the industry are people who do not have to risk their lives. Unlike the people in the industry who make the thing they love.
I’m going to stay away for a bit longer.
It’s not you, it’s me.
Quite simply: my desire to go out and have a pint does not supersede the risks that you are compelled to be under. Risks we’re already having to deal with.
I don’t blame you: people are desperate and impoverished. They are being forced into inhumane, immoral decisions between having a place to live and having a life to live in that place.
I can afford to stay out of your way, order online and take things to go. So I’m going to keep supporting you that way, for at least a few more weeks. You can establish your rules and procedures and I can let that all happen safely from home.
I’ll be back, don’t you worry.