Breweries and companies in the beer industry that partner with them are serving up intriguing new products and operating models by using artificial intelligence (AI) solutions. With AI technologies in the mix, brewers, as well as distilleries and wineries, are fast-tracking research, product development, and business, marketing, and distribution strategies.
AI adoption is creating competitive advantages for participating tech-driven organizations, inspiring everything from new beverage recipes to improving operations, creating valuable industry partnerships and alliances, enhancing supply chain procurement, and growing revenue for everyone in the beverage chain.
What is the status of these industry segments, and how are AI solutions propelling success?
Vigorous industries are ripe for growth with AI
The beer market is one of three segments in the alcoholic beverage industry that are seeing benefits from artificial intelligence. Experts point to AI for the future of new product development in the beverage industry, and it’s already being used to fuel advancements. The U.S. alcoholic beverage industry is steady, healthy, growing, and primed for growth and advancements by deploying AI.
- The U.S. alcoholic beverage industry grew by more than $76,097 million between 2006 and 2019. Today, American companies generate $252.82 billion annually in alcoholic beverage sales.
- Within the U.S. beverage manufacturing industry, shares of three industry components grew from 2001 to 2020, with breweries at 30%, wineries at 24%, and distilleries at 7%.
- As for sales and market share, in 2021, total alcoholic beverage sales in the United States reached over $247 billion and in 2022, the beer industry accounted for an estimated 41.9% of the U.S. alcohol industry market.
- The number of winery establishments in the United States exceeded 4,000 for the first time in 2016. In 2020, there were 5,024 wineries, more than four times the number in 2001.
- As of 2022, there were 2,230 active distilleries in the United States. The market size of this industry grew 4.3% per year on average between 2017 and 2022, increasing faster than the economy overall, with $18.8 billion in revenue in 2022.
“The use of new AI technology in consumer research, including marketing mapping and product optimization, is allowing beverage-makers to better understand and develop products for their consumers – with new, cost-effective, repeatable, and time-efficient methodologies,” says Jason M. Cohen, founder and CEO of Gastrograph AI. “Shorter development timelines, faster time to market, and higher success rates allow rapid adopters to invest more in their development, leading to earlier market entry of more winning products.”
Ever tried intelligent beer? Here’s a great example shared by Forbes Enterprise Tech contributor Bernard Marr: “Carlsberg, a Copenhagen-based brewery, began a multimillion-dollar, three-year Beer Fingerprinting Project in partnership with Microsoft, Aarhus University, and the Technical University of Denmark. Each day, they create 1,000 different beer samples and hope the Beer Fingerprinting Project will change the way new beers are created. The project uses sensors that can determine the flavor fingerprint of each sample and analyze different yeasts. The data is collected by an AI system, and it is ultimately expected that new brews will be developed from the information. Not only does the system allow products to get to market faster, it can also help ensure the highest quality.”
What technologies are creating opportunities?
Artificial intelligence is constantly growing, offering new technologies that are opening the sales spigots in multiple ways for brewers large and small, including craft beer brewers, microbreweries, and startups, along with distilleries and wineries. Here are some of those technologies and the benefits and increased sales they deliver:
- Using AI-powered predictive analytics, alcoholic beverage producers can easily analyze vast amounts of valuable data, such as consumer preferences, buying habits, and consumer and market trends. This enables brewers, distilleries, and wine companies to make informed decisions about product development, pricing, and marketing strategies – all of which lead to sales growth. Further, AI can help predict products and flavors that have a promising future for smart development.
- AI-driven recommendation systems play a crucial role in enhancing sales by analyzing consumer data and preferences. They can suggest relevant products to consumers based on prior purchases, ratings, and browsing behaviors. This is about personalization and a strong focus on the customer experience, which also leads to stronger sales. Breweries, distilleries, and wine companies can deploy these systems on their websites, mobile apps, and chatbots to deliver tailored-made suggestions that drive sales.
- AI-powered chatbots and virtual assistants are being deployed by breweries, distilleries, and wine companies to engage consumers, intelligently answer questions, and make recommendations. These conversational tools even offer food and beverage pairing recommendations, increasing customer interactions and influencing purchasing decisions.
- Breweries, distilleries, and wine companies can benefit from AI-powered social media analysis tools, which analyze enormous amounts of social media data to gauge consumer sentiments, preferences, and market trends. Companies use these tools to monitor social media platforms to track conversations about their products and brand mentions and analyze feedback. This helps to tailor marketing and advertising campaigns, identify and address customer concerns, and create products that align with what consumers want.
- AI can optimize supply chain management for breweries, distilleries, and wine companies, which greatly improves inventory management, cuts costs, and increases sales. AI algorithms forecast demand, improve production schedules, and ensure products are available at the right time. All of this reduces the risk of product shortages, improves customer satisfaction, and increases sales.
- AI-based pricing optimization tools help breweries, distilleries, and wine companies set the best pricing strategies by applying algorithms that create dynamic pricing models. They take all the important metrics into consideration, including production costs, market demand, consumer buying behaviors, and competitor pricing. Even better, these tools and models enable companies to make fast, real-time pricing adjustments to price products competitively and strategically.
Integrating artificial intelligence into the mix at breweries, distilleries, and wine companies empowers these organizations to make data-driven decisions, personalize customer experiences, optimize supply chain management, and deploy the most effective marketing strategies and gain a competitive edge.
Choose the right talent to top up your future!
IT-driven organizations are gearing up for the future by onboarding a variety of talent with the skills and applied experience to optimize artificial intelligence. Depending on the size of a company and its initiatives, some organizations start with an AI consultant to assess the talent they need. Others are in direct-hire mode right now.
Some of the most in-demand job candidates are CIOs, CTOs, AI researchers, data scientists, business analysts, and machine learning (ML) and data engineers. Other key roles include the specialists and designers who create and manage user-friendly AI-powered applications to deliver great user experiences (UX) and intuitive user interfaces (UI), which are key both internally and externally. AI ethicists, whether directly employed or a consultant, are also needed to ensure AI is used responsibly to protect data privacy, ensure transparency, and nurture trust with internal and external stakeholders.
Whether you’re looking for a job in the brewery, distillery, or winery world – or you need the right talent for your beverage business, Goodwin Recruiting has you covered.
Contact us for access to talent recruitment expertise and resources you need to grow!
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