Off-licence chain Oddbins is to launch a range of own-brand craft beers to tap in to demand for locally sourced ales.
It has linked up with Oxfordshire’s Compass Brewery to produce Oddbins No 2, a pale ale that will go on sale this week.
It is the first of a series of seasonal beers made by various craft brewers that will go on sale in stores and online under the Oddbins brand name this year, following a sell-out trial run of festive ale Oddbins No 1 before Christmas.
Managing director Ayo Akintola said: “Consumers are increasingly looking for locally made, independent beers that are full of flavour and character and Oddbins is proud to be a major supporter of craft ale producers in the UK.
“It is becoming a golden age for the industry and beer-lovers have never before enjoyed such a choice.
“Oddbins is playing a key role in introducing consumers to the wonderful world of craft beers.”
Craft beers now make up 47% of sales, the retailer said.
Oddbins No 1 was made by the East London Brewery and sales of the brewer’s other beers in Oddbins have risen 35% since December.
Oddbins No 2 is a Koelsch-style German beer, which the retailer said is a cross between a lager and an ale. It will retail at £2.65 for a 500ml bottle.
Its launch will be backed by an in-store and social media promotional campaign that includes creating an “official customer beer taster” who will be unpaid but receive a monthly supply of beer.