Thursday, September 26, 2013

Retail Juxtaposition Fail

When Mrs V lived in Charlottesville we usually shopped at the local Giant, at Pantops. Now that we live something like 15 miles from town we still often shop at the same store as it is on the way home. Yesterday I popped in after work as we needed some bits and bobs, and as ever I wandered down the beer aisle, which has recently undergone something of a transformation and expansion.

As part of this expansion, there are a series of information boards above the large coolers. The boards describe some beer styles and give an explanation of what 'craft' beer is, in the minds of some. Here is a picture I took yesterday of one such board.

Somewhat incongruous, no?

I am not saying that there is a deliberate attempt by either the large corporation that retails food, drink, and other necessary items, or the large multinational corporation that makes, and through its distributors, controls the entire beer industry in the US, to mislead consumers. It is however, an interesting case of product placement. Surely this board would have been better suited on the opposite cooler, rather than the board describing, loosely, a few beer styles? After all that was where all the 'craft' beer is kept.


  1. Given that the US does appear to have a definition of craft beer with some legal clout (Have I got that right? Is it legal?) this might actually be considered misleading advertising.

  2. While there is a definition of 'craft brewer' given by the Brewers Association, there is no definition of what is or is not 'craft beer' - though by extension a 'craft brewer' makes 'craft beer'. I am not sure there is any legal weight to the definition of a 'craft brewer', especially given the BA's press releases attacking large breweries for making 'crafty' beer, such as Blue Moon and Leinenkugel, if it had any legal weight then just sue.

    Accepting the BA definition of 'craft beer' and then expecting everyone else to fall in line 'because the BA says so' is the ultimate circular argument really, a bit like appealing to a religion's scriptures as the final word in a discussion when one of the interlocutors doesn't believe in the other's text.