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Could cask learn a little from ‘the Madri effect’?

The businesses behind marketing cask ale could learn from beer brands like Madri, according to beer writer and author Pete Brown.

Image c/o @madriexcepcional via Instagram

Leading a talk at the ‘Future of Cask’ seminar hosted by Cask Marque at Brewers Hall in London this week, Brown explained how much the premium lager category had grown despite other beers struggling to retain high volumes since the pandemic. He pointed out how, despite the struggles that brewers have faced, people’s thirst for new beers was still very much alive and, really, it was the marketing that needed to be refreshed.

Speaking about the issues cask faces, Brown said: “If we look at premium lager, it’s now 111% of the volume that it was in 2019. This is ‘the Madri effect’ which opened up a new category called ‘Mediterranean lager’.”

Making his point by pointing out the inconsistencies in the success of the beer sector, Brown stated that, ultimately, what consumers say they want and what they accept based upon image are very different things. He highlighted how “consumers told us they wanted authenticity, stories, localness and then they go and buy a completely made up brand that pretends to be Spanish and is brewed in Tadcaster in Burton upon Trent”.

He added: “It’s very very easy to slag Madri off, given that it’s Carling with added hop extract. But Madri is doing something that is phenomenally right and we need to look at what they are doing right, because cask isn’t doing that well and Madri is.”

Following Brown’s assertions, the drinks business reached out to Madri owner Molson Coors, but the brewer was unavailable for comment.

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