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CHICAGO -- There is good news in the beer industry: consumers have upped their beer consumption, with craft brews ticking up from last year.
According to Chicago-based research firm Mintel, consumers who were of legal drinking age in 2012 are the most likely to report increased consumption of beer (14 percent), which includes 7 percent of respondents who are drinking more craft beer in 2013 compared to 2012.
In addition, discovery of new beers is popular with 93 percent of imported beer drinkers, 88 percent of domestic fans and 84 percent of craft beer consumers.
Mintel released these new insights as the industry celebrates American Craft Beer Week.
Broken down by demographics, craft beers appeal to 49 percent of Millennials and 40 percent of those in Generation X. However, only 29 percent of Baby Boomers and 22 percent of the Swing Generation/World War II demographic find the segment appealing, the research firm added.
Hispanic consumers also turn to craft beer, with 38 percent indicating that they drink craft beer at any time. However, Mintel also found there is room to capture more of the Hispanic market -- 58 percent of Hispanics over 21 years old report drinking domestic beer and 55 percent of Hispanics drink imported beer.
In addition, 73 percent of craft beer drinkers say they usually know what brand of beer they are going to buy before they go to the store -- with liquor or package stores being the preferred outlets.
Despite the uptick in the craft beer segment, education is needed to win over more consumers. According to Mintel, one-third of craft and imported beer consumers ask sales associates for advice and information when buying beer. In addition, 45 percent of craft beer drinkers indicate they would try more craft beers if they knew more about them.