Sunday 22 May 2016 1:53 pm

Aldi taps into UK craft beer market in £600m deal with 18 new offerings

Cut-price supermarket Aldi has launched a £600m initiative to tap into the UK's burgeoning craft beer industry. 

From 29 May, the bargain grocer will stock 18 UK brewed craft beers in its English and Welsh stories. 

The beers will be sold as a "Specialbuy" purchase, meaning a limited number of beers have been brought in as stock and will be priced at £1.25.  

Aldi's crafty move in its English and Welsh stores follows two recent supermarket deals to increase craft beer offerings in their Scottish stores, but not throughout England and Wales.

Read more: London toasts boom in craft beer start-ups

In mid-April, Asda announced an £850,000 listings deal made with 13 breweries to put 25 new craft beers on its Scottish shelves, while in early May upmarket grocer Waitrose began selling 49 new craft offerings in its seven Scottish stores.

Each beer in Aldi's range has been "hand-picked" by the retailer's team over the course of two years and selected to "celebrate provenance, artisan brewing and the exceptional beer produced across the UK". 

It includes offerings from Box Steam Brewery, Wadworth Brewery, Sadler's Brewery, Sussex-based Arundel Brewery and Hogsback Brewery, among others. 

Read more: London brews success on craft beer's "luxury" status

Tony Baines, Aldi's joint managing director of corporate buying, said: "We're delighted to be supporting the growth of some of the most distinguished regional breweries and microbreweries across the country and cannot wait to offer their signature ales to Aldi shoppers across the UK."

Tony Jerome, communications director of the Society for Independent Brewers (SIBA), said:

It’s great to see Aldi championing local breweries and bringing the taste of some of Britain’s finest craft-brewed ales to shoppers across the country. Craft brewed beer is the strongest it’s ever been in the UK and Aldi’s range will strengthen that trend even further.