Local Breweries “Raise a Glass” To Five Million Pint Co-op Contract

28 December 2017

Local breweries UK-wide are raising a glass to toast a contract win with the Co-op which will see almost 200 smaller suppliers tap into sales of an estimated 5 Million pints.

Following a pilot in Yorkshire in late 2015, the Co-op has extended its local sourcing programme county by county and is set to complete the UK-wide roll-out of locally loved products in the coming weeks.

Backing British products is a cornerstone of the Co-op’s food strategy, and its Members, colleagues and customers have a say in the local lines selected.

Fierce Brewery of Dyce, Aberdeen – which won Breakthrough Brewery of the Year at this year’s Scottish Beer Awards – will supply Co-op’s stores with three of its ales: Easy Shift; Day Shift and, Moose Mousse.

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Louise Grant, of Fierce Brewery, said: “We are delighted to be working with the Co-op, its support for local producers fits well with our ethos of sourcing locally – such as a local chocolatier providing ingredients for our Moose Mousse chocolate stout. The reach and exposure of the Co-op’s community-based stores comes at a great time in our business development, supporting our brand awareness and opening new markets among residents and visitors alike.”

Hucknall-based Lincoln Green Brewing Co will supply the community retailer’s food stores in Nottinghamshire with its ales. The independent craft brewery was founded by husband and wife Anthony and Lynette Hughes in 2012 when Anthony invested a redundancy payment with the dream of turning a hobby for home brewing into a business.

Anthony Hughes, co-founder of Lincoln Green Brewing Co, said: “We are really pleased, this represents the brewery’s largest order to date, and working with the Co-op with its history, values and community is a great fit with our approach to business.”

The move is also a landmark deal for Derby’s Dancing Duck brewery, representing its largest order to date. The award winning Dancing Duck Brewery now employs eight people, and will supply the Co-op with three of its ales; Ay Up, 22 and, Dark Drake - a beer that has previously won the accolade of Champion Stout of Britain.

Rachel Matthews, founder of Dancing Duck Brewery, said: “This is an exciting development for Dancing Duck. Our philosophy is one of using the finest ingredients – a passion for quality which we know is shared by the Co-op – and it is this passion which goes into every pint.”

Wales’ Boss Brewing also has a contract with the Co-op in the “can” – with a new deal to supply around 100 Co-op stores with canned ale coming ahead of a New Year move to a new brewery site. The brewery’s £250,000 conversion of the old Landore cinema (near Swansea’s Liberty Stadium) breathes new life into the listed building with the creation of a brewery and tap room bar with canning and bottling facility.

Sarah John, co-founder of Boss Brewing, said: “Working with the Co-op has played a big part in our business development, opening up new markets for us and creating brand awareness in communities across Wales. We are very excited about the move to a new site, it is a very big thing for us, and supplying the Co-op with our canned ales comes at a perfect time as we create our own canning facility – supporting our investment plans and helping to create new jobs. We are seeing a significant trend towards canned ales as craft ale followers increasingly seek out something that both looks and tastes different.”

Simon Dryell, Head of Local Sourcing at the Co-op, explained: “The innovation, passion and quality going into these products is what makes them special. Our customers tell us that food provenance really matters to them, quality, trust, convenience and value are key for consumers. The Co-op is committed to investing in its local communities, supporting local economies and providing opportunities to showcase, support and celebrate great local produce.”

Jake Woods, Co-op Beer Buyer, said: “Locally produced ale is an exciting category, we see significant potential for continued sustainable growth, and we are delighted to support and champion these beers which are brewed with pride and passion to deliver consistently great quality and taste.”

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Andrew Torr Co-op Press Office M: 07702 505 551 E: andrew.torr@coop.co.uk