CiderCon, the world’s biggest cider conference, has been going for 7 years now and is run by the USACM. Number 8 will be held in Baltimore, the first time the event has taken place on the East coast; And it’s not surprising, when you discover that New York state has over 80 cider makers alone. The independent city of Baltimore also has the advantage of being located about 40 miles North East of the capital and USACM have made the best of this, by planning a ‘Cider Round Table’ with USACM members and members of Congress.
CiderCon was brought about to have positive changes on the cider industry. Everything from cider making, cider fruit production, the cider market and regulations. Basically, a lot of important things! The event continues to grow and evolve and it has seen tremendous growth in attendance in 2015 and 2017, the trade show has more than doubled it’s vendors. It’s an opportunity for the cider community to come together and brainstorm, for the greater good of the industry. It’s events like these that can push cider forward and bring better practices, regulations and just generally much needed attention for this beautiful beverage, that is cider. It’s a 4 day event, which runs from January 30th until February the 2nd. The schedule covers all bases previously mentioned through tours, conferences, workshops, tasting sessions, even technical training for cider makers, the list goes on.
USACM have also entered into a partnership with Nielsen, a company which provides research into what consumers watch and buy, to collect marketing data as a benefit to it’s members. Nielsen’s presentation at CiderCon 2017 created a massive buzz as it’s reports showed continued strong growth among local/craft cider companies not attached to larger beer companies. Nielsen will be attending and presenting again this year, reporting on cider trends as a featured speaker, so watch this space…
This all brings about the simple matter of where is Britain’s CiderCon? The supposed home of cider. They’re can only be a positive outcome from staging a similar event in the UK, it really is quite a mystery as to why we don’t have one. After all Britain is the biggest market for cider in the world. It’s worth 2.88 billion a year in the UK and 10,900 jobs depend on the UK cider industry, shouldn’t we treat it with a bit more TLC. Continuing with numbers…UK cider exports are worth over 100 million a year, but when you compare this to the gin and beer export numbers, it’s about 400 to 500 million behind.
Isn’t it time that the people within the UK cider industry, big and small, pulled together to reap the benefits that British cider can bring.