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Old 05-25-2012, 05:35 PM   #171
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A call to Cargill answered the GMO question, according to the product specialist I spoke with "No, we don't have anything like that. This question came up a couple weeks ago with the sales manager too. To our knowledge there is NO [brewer's] barley that is GMO at all"

So, that answers that... OP was misinformed regarding GMO brewer's malt and Cargill

Pricing? I asked them for a price breakdown (I actually have a project in the fire, I would have contacted them on this anyway). When I can speak with a sales rep, I will compare to other suppliers and see about the comparison. Even if they should turn out to be the cheapest, I would be surprised if it were by much. Briess and Great Western are very closely priced, I doubt Cargill would be much different.

$3.25/ pint is dirt cheap Standard price across the country for a pint in the mid-nineties was $3. Most places now it seems to be $4.

Once again I will reiterate that profit margins on bottled beer are RAZOR thin... pennies per bottle once ingredient costs, labor, packaging and general overhead are accounted for. Keg profits are better, but still low... A per keg cost of $70 is a good ballpark (includes labor and utilities to produce the beer, but not general overhead which still needs to be covered-things like loan payoffs on equipment/cooperage, rent, salary of non production personnel, etc.). If a brewery has to sell through a distributor they can expect to get $95 for that keg. Lets say the other costs add $10 to the brewery's cost, they make maybe $15 on that keg. That is a ridiculously small margin! IF the brewery is lucky enough to be able to self-distribute, they could sell the keg for $150. That brings the margin into a more sane range, but it is also a LOT more work. Essentially, you have to sell a LOT of beer to make a profit! If a small brewery can sell over the bar, the profit on that beer is probably carrying everything else. Vince Cottone of Sound Brew, a well known industry consultant, suggests that the minimum output for a production brewery to be profitable is 3k bbl/year... even that could be pushing it IMO.

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Old 05-25-2012, 05:38 PM   #172
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facts really do destroy a good thread.

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Old 05-25-2012, 05:44 PM   #173
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Originally Posted by jtakacs
facts really do destroy a good thread.
Not destroyed until hitler gets pulled into it.
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Old 05-25-2012, 05:48 PM   #174
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Not destroyed until hitler gets pulled into it.
.....and on post 173, Godwin spoke.
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Old 05-25-2012, 05:49 PM   #175
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I live about 10 Min from Russian River, and I go at least once a month. Their beer is no more expensive than any other brewery in this area. I am opening a Nano just up the road, and I will be charging really high prices for local craft beer. If you want really good beer and you want it to be cheap, make it. I have paid over 10k in permits alone, grain is not cheap, and employees are over the top expensive. I am doing it because I love brewing. Sorry for the rant, but if you are going to complain about Russian River, complain about the bartender that never has anything nice to say and feels to important to be friendly, not about their prices.
Random aside, are you the one who's going into Barlow when/if they finally open?

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Old 05-25-2012, 05:52 PM   #176
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I have not had a RR beer nor have I seen one. I surely will be on the lookout though. I see that Pliny is at the top of a lot list here. I'll trust that.

I think I will take the position that they were under valuing their beer at $2.50 when it should have been at least $7 a pint. What a great gesture on their part. At $3.25 they are still going above and beyond. Look at how well they treat their patrons.

As in life...a lot can be summed up in one word...perspective!

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Old 05-25-2012, 06:08 PM   #177
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I somewhat agree with the OP, regardless if his intention was to troll. Craft breweries for the most part try to steer those mainstream drinkers towards the 'better' side of beer, and one of the factors consumers have to deal with is a higher price point, fine. But when profit becomes the intention, it takes away the 'craft' in craftbeers IMO. I've had many of RR beers, will i stop purchasing them? No... but i will be more inclined to drink others before RR.
You must not be aware of the purpose behind a business.

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A business (also known as enterprise or firm) is an organization engaged in the trade of goods, services, or both to consumers.[1] Businesses are predominant in capitalist economies, where most of them are privately owned and administered to earn profit to increase the wealth of their owners. Businesses may also be not-for-profit or state-owned. A business owned by multiple individuals may be referred to as a company, although that term also has a more precise meaning.
The etymology of "business" relates to the state of being busy either as an individual or society as a whole, doing commercially viable and profitable work. The term "business" has at least three usages, depending on the scope — the singular usage to mean a particular organization; the generalized usage to refer to a particular market sector, "the music business" and compound forms such as agribusiness; and the broadest meaning, which encompasses all activity by the community of suppliers of goods and services. However, the exact definition of business, like much else in the philosophy of business, is a matter of debate and complexity of meanings.
I'd say that 70 BBL capacity still qualifies them as a craft/micro brewery and if you look at the other local "craft/micro" breweries (Lagunitas, Aleworks, Bear Republic, Hopmunk etc) as well as other local bars/pubs the median price for a pint of beer is $4.50 - $5.50 normally and $3 - $4 during happy hour (FYI none of those are for 20oz pours).

I'd say Russian River is well within those guidelines. Add in they've been able to keep their prices stable while costs have gone up and adding a new production facility. Trying to pass off a comparison today's prices to when a brewery opened 8 years ago without exploring all factors is just idiotic.

Add in that Vinnie is a hell of a nice guy and I'll still gladly drink RR beers occasionally. Plus I've heard that they give happy hour pricing all day every day for AHA members (I'm not one, so take that with a grain of salt).

Bottom line is, if you don't like their business practice don't give them you're business, but don't expect rational people to get behind your irrational arguements.
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Old 05-25-2012, 06:09 PM   #178
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But we're all craft maaaan...and it's like we're all brewing together maaaan... it's like we're one big brewery maaan so share the beer maaan. Besides beer comes from nature maaan..and no one owns nature!

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Old 05-25-2012, 06:19 PM   #179
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Will check that out in my July visit.
Also check out Lagunitas in Petaluma when you're here. I really enjoy their tap room and beers.

If you're a wine guy as well, we have a ton of smaller, fantastic local wineries.
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Old 05-25-2012, 06:23 PM   #180
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Again for Oldworld, which malts are GMO from Cargill? They certainly sell GMO corn and soybeans but AFAIK there are no commercially grown GMO barley malts.
I work in the barley and malt industry on the R&D side. Our stakeholders are the American Malting Barley Association (AMBA) and other large breweries. I know AMBA does not recommend any variety of barley that is GMO. I don't know of any GMO barley that is available commercially. I mentioned a project to my advisor that involved adding a more thermostable beta-amylase gene to barley and was told that under no circumstances would the barley industry have anything to do with GMO crops. I would love to see a source to the OPs claim that RR is using GMOs.

On a side note I am in favor of feeding the world using less pesticides, fertilizers, and herbicides so therefore I am a proponent of GMO crops.
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