Americans will soon be swilling our very own Moa Beer thanks to a trio of crafty export deals.
The craft label (also the official beer of the New Zealand Olympic team) has locked in nationwide distribution at Whole Foods, America’s largest organic supermarket chain.
And as a result of two US visits by general manager Gareth Hughes in 2011 and early 2012, Moa has also won a high-value deal at the Yard House chain of restaurants and bars, enabled in part by the company’s use of environmentally friendly recyclable 'key kegs'. Key kegs are lightweight disposable kegs; their cardboard outers and plastic inners are completely recyclable and don’t need to be returned to Moa as traditional metal containers would.
“Whole Foods receives thousands of submissions from brands wanting to be ranged there – very few make it through,” Hughes says. “Moa is the first Australasian beer to be ranged in Whole Foods.”
But wait, there's more! To top it all off, a third deal will see Moa Beer heading to Las Vegas, where it will be served in some of the top casinos, including Caesar’s Palace, the Venetian and more.
Expat Kiwi Clyde Burney heads up the beer division for Southern Wines
and Spirits and has helped drive the Moa distribution deals in Nevada.
“I call Moa ‘the Chimay of the South Pacific’ – our team loves this beer and we believe it stacks up alongside the best that the Belgium trappists have to offer,” Clyde says.
Moa says its green technology and sustainable practices were key to sewing up these three deals.
Moa executive chairman Geoff Ross says Moa Beer’s craft credentials attracted the suppliers – but its green credentials make it possible.
“Moa is a natural beer, with no chemicals or preservatives, which sits well with discerning Americans. The fact Moa is bottle-conditioned and fermented – just like beer used to be – means it travels well too.
“And the very fact it’s from New Zealand appeals to American consumers. They see New Zealand as a pure place which is ideal for brewing a natural beer.”