First up, a fascinating long piece in US News and World Report on the battle between Budweiser (and later InBev) and Boston Beer. It expands into a discussion of the direction of the beer market and is more thoughtful and researched than most things you'll read. Sample pithy passage:
Both Anheuser-Busch InBev and MillerCoors employ "category space analysts," whose job is to visit a store like 7-Eleven and consult them on the optimal placements of beer on the shelves.
"They are doing the sets, they [say to a store]: 'We can do that for you,'" says Koch. "And then they can take my beer from eye level to the top shelf, which drops my sales rate in half."One thing I have to admit--when the Brewers Association launched the Craft versus Crafty debate, they struck gold. A few mooks like me gave a raspberry, but the BA effort has launched tons of friendly media reports. This one in the US News even has a section header labeled "Big Beer Gets Crafty."
In a related piece, Goose Island announces that more production is moving to Bud plants:
Things are going to be getting mighty interesting in the beer biz in the next five years.
To meet increasing demand from the national launch, 312 Urban Wheat Ale, Honker’s Ale, IPA and the seasonal offerings will be produced at Anheuser-Busch breweries in Fort Collins, Colo. and Baldwinsville, N.Y. Led by Goose Island brewmasterBrett Porter , Goose Island brewers will oversee the production of all the beers at the new facilities....
312 Urban Wheat Ale, Honker’s Ale, India Pale Ale (IPA) and a rotating seasonal selection of Mild Winter, Summertime or Harvest Ale are now available on draught nationwide. Additionally, those same beers will be available in bottles nationwide beginning this spring.
*I'm not sure there are 25 influential beers in Oregon's short good-beer history, but if there are, the list surely can't include eight pales and IPAs.