By Annette Shailer, editor Beer & Brewer
Award-winning New Zealand brewery, Yeastie Boys, is setting up a brewing and distribution base in Australia.
Yeastie Boys Australia, a joint venture with the owners of distribution business Experienceit Beverages, will launch from mid-January 2017, with a new beer in 330ml cans.
The venture means Yeastie Boys beers will be brewed in Sydney, as well as imported from NZ and the UK, and will be available nationally via Yeastie Boys Australia and Experienceit’s distribution channels.
“We’ve long had a great reputation in Australia but our focus was always elsewhere,” Yeastie Boys creative director Stu McKinlay explains.
“The team at Experienceit have been good friends for a long time, so they were forefront of our mind when we decided to look at how we approach the Australian market. We connected completely on the idea of actually setting up a base in Australia, which means we’ll now have a local company with its eyes completely trained on what is happening in the great southern land.”
Yeastie Boys are not new to setting up on foreign soil as they are now 18 months into a venture brewing in the UK, where they have embedded themselves as a part of the local market.
“Exporting our products around the world is becoming less of an option as we see local beer scenes really exploding in both diversity and quality,” remarked McKinlay, who is now based in the UK.
“And the setup of Yeastie Boys Australia will allow us to build a local base making New Zealand-style craft beer in Australia. It gives us far more reason to invest in Australia.”
The new venture will see a broader Yeastie Boys range available in Australia, with beers created specifically to suit the local market.
“Our aim with this new venture is to deliver a fantastic selection of Yeastie Boys beers from around the Yeastie globe (UK and NZ), while at the same time creating something uniquely Australian with the Yeastie Boys range, while never forgetting their underlying Kiwi heritage,” said Experienceit managing director Johnny Latta.
“Expect to see a broader range, improved pricing and importantly a new Australian beer entity focused on delivering a premium quality product to Australian craft beer venues and drinkers.”
Up until now, Yeastie Boys was imported and distributed in Australia by Phoenix Beers.
“Phoenix have been an integral part of the Yeastie Boys story in Australia…they have been brilliant partners since late 2012. Although it’s certainly sad to move on, we’re immensely excited about the future, and we’re sure to remain close to Phoenix as they continue to distribute a great range of beer,” said McKinlay.
Yeastie Boys Australia will release a new beer in 330ml cans as its first Australian-brewed beer from January 2017. Yeastie Boys NZ brewed beer will remain available through Phoenix Beers until around the end of first quarter 2017.