Britain’s oldest brewer, Shepherd Neame, has signed new agreements with Canada’s oldest independent brewery, Moosehead Breweries, to act as their distributors for the US and for Canada.
The Kent brewery’s flagship beer, Spitfire Premium Kentish Ale, will be on sale across North America from September, with further products planned for 12 months’ time.
Spitfire will be available on draught for the first time in 50ltr kegs and also on sale in 330ml bottle six packs (packed four per case for trade) and 12 x 500ml bottle cases. Packs and keg tap handles feature Union Jack branding
The two businesses were introduced to each other by the Boston Beer Company, for whom Shepherd Neame brews Samuel Adams Boston Lager in the UK and Moosehead Breweries distribute in Canada. The synergies between the historic, multi-generational family brewers were clear from the outset and negotiations have resulted in five year contracts being signed for each market.
Shepherd Neame export manager Olly Scott says it’s great to be back: “The US deal means Shepherd Neame beer will be available in the USA for the first time since 2001 and that’s very exciting for us. We know drinkers value greatly the heritage of our brewery and quality of our beers. Meanwhile, signing Moosehead Breweries as our new distributors for Canada will expand our distribution to new provinces: again, it’s a hugely exciting prospect.”
Moosehead Breweries vice president for sales and marketing, Jim Eagles adds: “We know our customers have huge affection for Spitfire Ale, it’s a quintessential English ale which is supported by a very cheeky marketing campaign that really resonates with people. It’s great that two companies with such shared ambitions, and whose pasts mirror each other so closely, meet the demand we know exists for Spitfire in North America.”