Giant Pops the Top on Co-Branded Microbrew

Drinks appoints Walmart veteran to oversee logistics
Bud Light & Budweiser
Photograph: Shutterstock

National stay-at-home orders have led to an overall upsurge in grocery, while beer sales are said to be soaring too. But smaller, independent breweries known for their IPAs and seasonal concoctions have been hit harder than mega brands because of a near halt in normal operations of restaurants and bars. But now grocery retailers and small beer makers are starting to collaborate.

Giant Food Stores and Roy Pitz Brewing Co. announced they have partnered to bring the Chambersburg, Pa.-based brewer's signature beers to grocery store aisles. Starting May 1, Giant shoppers can pick up four-packs of a new brew called Hazy Little Giant. Roy Pitz describes its new 5.5% ABV India pale ale as a beer with "a cloudy orange appearance from huge amounts of Citra, Galaxy and Simcoe hops imparted in dry hopping."  

The special beer collaboration of Hazy Little Giant takes place with Giant stores participating statewide. Four-packs of the beer go for $10.99, with $1 of each purchase going to The Salvation Army of Chambersburg.

Roy Pitz Brewing Co.

Photograph courtesy of Roy Pitz Brewing Co.

Giant separately announced it is teaming for a second time with cheese maker Caputo Brothers Creamery of Spring Grove, Pa., and Troegs Independent Brewing of Hershey, Pa., to bring back Troegenator Beer Cheese, a big hit with last year's shoppers. 

"In a time when a lot of us are feeling helpless, we asked ourselves what we can do to make a difference. This partnership with Giant and Troegs has already helped keep two dairy farms running," said Rynn Caputo, president of Caputo Brothers Creamery. "This is our opportunity to make a small but important difference in the world, to keep more Pennsylvania farms sustainably operating. If enough people focus on one thing they can do to make this situation better, we can come back even stronger."

The sweet and creamy beer cheese has lively notes of citrus, also thanks to the addition of Citra hops, the same aromatic American-grown flower that is a key flavor component in both the best-selling Troegs Perpetual IPA, as well as Giant's new specialty Roy Pitz IPA.

Drinks Appoints Walmart Veteran to Oversee Logistics

The wine-as-a-service (WaaS) platform Drinks Holdings Inc. has hired 27-year Walmart veteran Hans Holmer as its new VP of operations.

Hans Holmer

Hans Holmer

Holmer will oversee supply chain and logistics for Drinks, the Los Angeles-based platform providing online wine sourcing and fulfillment for retailers including Kroger, Boxed and Thrive Market. Drinks also operates direct-to-consumer online wine shops Wine Insiders and Martha Stewart Wine.

At Walmart, Holmer most recently was senior director of regional transportation for Walmart Transportation, after having been senior director of fulfillment operations for Holmer also held roles in wholesale club distribution with Sam’s Club and supply chain management for Walmart. He is a former captain in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

“At a time when the retail landscape is undergoing immense change, no company is better prepared to handle the increased demand for convenient adult beverage options,” Holmer said in a statement. “I’m thrilled to join one of the most dynamic companies in the industry and dive into a rapidly changing product category.”

Drinks said its proprietary WaaS platform enables retailers to “plug in” to a fully operational sourcing, fulfillment and compliant distribution network to offer wine for home delivery.

“Since our founding in 2013, Drinks has become the industry leader in the digital transformation of the wine industry, starting with our DTC brand Wine Insiders and expanding to our WaaS platform for retailers,” said Zac Brandenberg, co-founder and CEO. “Hans brings extensive experience and best-in-class talent to our team, in support of our rapidly scaling consumer marketplace and retailer partnerships.”

Bud Light Draft Night Raises Boos for COVID Relief

Sports fans recently got some respite from the current "no sports" world created by the coronavirus outbreak and stay-at-home safety measures. The annual NFL Draft took place, albeit without the normal huge gatherings of player picks and NFL franchise executives. Originally planned to take place in Paradise, Nev., a city adjacent to Las Vegas, Draft Night took place virtually, with announcements and selections being made by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell from his home in Bronxville, N.Y.

Booing the commissioner prior to the first pick has been a staple of the NFL Draft for years. Bud Light encouraged fans to keep the tradition alive, while raising money to aid relief efforts, by agreeing to donate $1 (up to a total of $500,000) to the NFL Draft-a-Thon for each #BootheCommish social media tweet or post from football fans. The campaign started on Draft Night (April 23) and ran through April 25. After completion of the NFL Draft, the league representatives reported that more than $100 million was raised for COVID-19 relief efforts.



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