Waitrose has become the latest supermarket to significantly expand into the world of craft beer, placing 49 new Scottish-brewed offerings on its shelves in the country from today.
The upmarket grocer, which only has seven stores in Scotland, has doubled the number of Scottish craft beer and ales it stock and has increased the number of breweries it works with from 13 to 21.
It also extended the selection of beers and ales from some of its existing suppliers, such as Fyne Ales, bringing the total number of Scottish beers, ales and lagers available to over 90.
In mid-April, supermarket giant Asda announced it had agreed a listings deal with 13 breweries to put 25 new craft beers on its shelves in Scotland, in a deal worth more than £850,000.
In partnership with Scotland Food and Drink, Waitrose sampled 140 craft beers from across Scotland before making the final selection, which includes beverages from Isle of Skye Brewing, Glasgow-based Drygate and Fallen Brewing, based in Stirlingshire.
"This is the biggest regional beer hunt Waitrose has ever undertaken, which gives you an idea of how seriously we are taking the craft beer movement in Scotland," Oliver O’Mara, local and regional buyer for Waitrose, said.
"The Scottish brewing scene is at the forefront of innovation in the UK, such as the Goldfinch by Black Isle, a gluten free and organic beer which is now available in all our Scottish branches."
Twelve of the new beers are exclusive to Waitrose, while a gluten-free option (from Black Isle Brewery) is also exclusive to the grocer.
Kenny Webster, managing director of Isle of Skye Brewing said: "The appetite for craft beers among consumers is continuing to grow rapidly. Customers want a beer with real character and they want to experiment with their purchases so Waitrose’s commitment to stocking Scottish products is really encouraging and we’re proud to be a part of the announcement."