Questions for Homebrewer's from a College Student:

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Daniel Murphy

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Hello everyone! My name is Daniel Murphy, and I'm a current college student. I'm a class called Technology Entrepreneurship, in which we're tasked with creating the barebones of an actual tech startup. I've always found the craft beer industry fascinating, more specifically I've always admired home brewer's the most. I've had several friends and peers attempt to become a part of the home brewing industry. Most of them ended up failing within the year, whether it was a lack of resources, time, money, etc. I'm interested in creating better market traction for smaller brewer's who are attempting to create a name for themselves within the space. I created an idea without ever initially talking with many home brewer's besides my friends. I figured I'd attempt to get involved in forum's and my local communities association to get advice from actual brewer's about their needs and wants.

My biggest question for you all is what do you find is consistently the biggest problem home brewer's face? Is it a lack of resources, time, or even knowledge? Do most home brewer's get into the industry in hopes that one day their product will hit shelves, or are most involved in brewing just for the simple love of the art? Do you find it hard to receive feedback on your brews? How do home brewer's typically evolve into more regional brewery's and establish a brand? Is it just by word of mouth or competitions? I'm super interested in this topic as a whole. I'd also love to chat personally with people about their overall experience and what they've learned through their own home brewing experiences! Any information or advice would be great, and I'm always open to new ideas, thanks everybody!
 

DVCNick

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I think you are making the (likely false) assumption that most home brewers, or at least the ones here, are looking to turn it into a commercial venture some day by opening a commercial brewery. I can't speak for everyone of course, but I think most are just looking to make beer at a small scale, for personal consumption, for the fun of it mostly, and maybe save some money along the way.

Much in the same way that I might want to learn how to cook a really nice steak at home for the satisfaction of knowing I can, and it is a lot cheaper than going to Ruth's Chris. But it doesn't mean my end game is opening a restaurant.

But to directly answer your question, some things I wish were different or that I'd like to improve for myself right now:

1) It does consume a lot of time; you can do some things to streamline it but mashing, boiling, cooling, transferring, cleaning, all take the time they take. But if there were a magic way to brew a batch in an hour I'd be all over it.

2) I wish there was a reliable way to actually get accurate yeast cell counts

3) I wish there was a good way to learn how to identify off flavors at home. Morebeer just sent an email not long ago with a kit that might address this.. I'm interested and will be following up on that soon.
 

bkboiler

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As I'm sure you're noting by the fact that you're taking an entrepreneurship class is that any industry attracting college grads likely has a lot of money flowing....enough to pay your salary.
That's the number one thing that frustrates me as a homebrewer. That stuff costs too darn much. I guess that makes me cheap.. and grumpy. Oh yeah, and stay off my lawn :rolleyes:
 

cactusgarrett

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Just as DVCNick suggested, it might be beneficial to confirm you're actually talking about the homebrew industry, and not the craft beer or brewing industry. It sounds nit picky, but there's a difference. (IMHO) the homebrew industry is centered around local homebrew shops, online retail, media (blog, podcasts, etc.) centered on homebrewing, whereas the other industries are revolve around commercial brewing of some form.
 

Soulshine2

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Hello everyone! My name is Daniel Murphy, and I'm a current college student. I'm a class called Technology Entrepreneurship, in which we're tasked with creating the barebones of an actual tech startup. I've always found the craft beer industry fascinating, more specifically I've always admired home brewer's the most. I've had several friends and peers attempt to become a part of the home brewing industry. Most of them ended up failing within the year, whether it was a lack of resources, time, money, etc. I'm interested in creating better market traction for smaller brewer's who are attempting to create a name for themselves within the space. I created an idea without ever initially talking with many home brewer's besides my friends. I figured I'd attempt to get involved in forum's and my local communities association to get advice from actual brewer's about their needs and wants.

My biggest question for you all is what do you find is consistently the biggest problem home brewer's face? Is it a lack of resources, time, or even knowledge? Do most home brewer's get into the industry in hopes that one day their product will hit shelves, or are most involved in brewing just for the simple love of the art? Do you find it hard to receive feedback on your brews? How do home brewer's typically evolve into more regional brewery's and establish a brand? Is it just by word of mouth or competitions? I'm super interested in this topic as a whole. I'd also love to chat personally with people about their overall experience and what they've learned through their own home brewing experiences! Any information or advice would be great, and I'm always open to new ideas, thanks everybody!
I like beer and I like to cook . I got into brewing as a self supplying hobby .I have no intention to put it on a public access shelf. I also have a love of gardening so I started growing my own hops to add. I would say home brewing is definitely NOT a money saver when you consider the supplies and equipment required and the time invested . Its the difference between a tub of Blue Bell or Breyers and a batch of homemade ice cream with organic ingredients. The difference between McDonalds and a back yard grilled angus burger with garden grown onion ,tomato and lettuce . You get the idea.
 

McKnuckle

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If your course is on technology entrepreneurship, then perhaps you're barking up the wrong tree with this beer-making line of questioning... Read the assignment again, carefully this time. :)

(As both a homebrewer and a technology professional, I definitely know the difference between the two.)
 
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