My name is Blake Konrardy, and I founded Supplemental Brewing, a company that makes fitness-focus beers fortified with protein. The idea came to me after spending far too many Friday evenings double-fisting a protein shake and a beer after my workout (it's gross, don't try it). I turned down attending Harvard Law School to pursue something I was truly passionate about. We'll see how it works out!

 

Happy to answer any and all questions about beer, fitness, starting a business, or whatever else is on your mind!

 

Proof: http://imgur.com/QGubxB6

https://twitter.com/SuppBrewing/status/650816145428205568

 

EDIT: Questions seem to be winding down, so I'm going to add my obligatory wrap-up edit in here. Thanks for all the great questions everyone! I'll continue to answer any more that come in. Also, one last comment: please take a look at our Kickstarter, which is currently live. Thank you!

Comments: 321 • Responses: 58  • Date: 

rrrx199 karma

My question is: This is a bad idea.

For your sake I do hope I'm wrong, but my intuition -- something developed from three decades of experience in the craft beer industry -- tells me I'm probably not. How much market research have you done, particularly in finding your consumers? What kind of feedback have you gotten from the TTB? What kind of statements are you going to be making in your marketing? What portion of fitness enthusiasts are regular drinkers? How significant is the negative stigma against alcohol consumption in the fitness community?

One of the biggest lessons we've learned in the craft beer industry over the past ten or fifteen years is that novelty beers do not survive. If you're going to be marketing mostly in the craft segment, your main selling point has to be that your beer is good, not that it's good for you. I cannot stress that enough. The novelty-over-quality mistake is a big part of why products like Moonshot fail.

And not to put too fine of a point on it, but have you been to a lot of craft beer events? Fitness enthusiasts aren't exactly our core consumers. Sure, there's a niche there, but we've found that most craft drinkers would rather drink less of a really good beer that's higher in calories and carbs than more of a not-so-good beer that's lower in calories and carbs. Most beers don't even have nutritional information because the TTB doesn't even require it, and you want to make your beer's nutritional information its main selling point. And looking at whatever niche is there, how sure are you that it isn't already being filled, or well on its way to being filled, by companies that have a head start on you?

If you're going to be marketing mostly in the macro segment, then you're taking on a whole separate set of problems I don't envy.

I don't mean to be discouraging. But if you don't already have really good answers for yourself to all of these questions, you'd better get them very soon.

imblake3128 karma

It saddens me that the craft beer industry has already gotten to the point of discouraging innovative (and sometimes downright weird) new products. I appreciate your insights, but I have conducted extensive market research which it sounds like you would argue I should value more than "intuition."

Our marketing simply tells what is contained in our beers - that they are fortified with whey protein. Our target customer already uses whey protein, so he or she knows the benefits, and we don't have to describe them. The market of fitness enthusiast who drink is HUGE, actually much larger than the craft beer market. A post about our beer was trending to be the top post over on r/fitness until it was removed. People who regularly exercise drink more than those who do not. I'll cite a study: "drinking is associated with a 10.1 percentage point increase in the probability of exercising vigorously." Have you ever run a 5k or a marathon? Ever see what they always drink at the end of the race?

My goal is to create a completely new segment of beer. Yes, it is craft beer by definition, but craft beer enthusiasts who don't work out are not our target market. We believe we can take some more of the macro beer market with a product that has a claim other than simply "ours tastes better." Don't think it can happen? That was the thought for craft beer as a whole 15 years ago.

We do not produce a novelty beer, we make a great tasting beer with extra protein to meet your fitness goals. No one can say whether than is novelty or not except the customers. You probably said Not Your Father's Root Beer was a novelty, as well, but I'd really like to be in their shoes right now.

Appreciate you sharing your industry intuition with me. You are correct that much of the craft beer segment will not care about our product,, and that's exactly what we expect. I think you and I would both be happy taking a little more market share from AB & MillerCoors, so cheers to that!

The_Third_Three44 karma

Dude, fitness enthusiast, more than amateur less than pro cyclist, here and I love beer. I love the idea of your product and hope it takes off beautifully. I've already passed this around to all of my friends that I think will love this. Best of luck and may your kickstarter be bountiful!

imblake320 karma

Thank you! I know many runners and cyclists are big beer drinkers, which makes sense given the insane amount of calories you're burning off. Appreciate you spreading the word!

OkHorse11 karma

Another segment to look into that would probably be at least open to trying it is competitive Ultimate Frisbee (and maybe rugby, actually).

We drink like fish and are usually fairly health conscious.

imblake35 karma

That's a great idea. I thought of runners and cyclists, but hadn't reached out to any ultimate frisbee or rugby groups. Thanks!

Penguin_Party123456 karma

My fraternity bros and I would have definitely pregamed with this beer on Fridays nights before moving into cheaper lighter beer later in the night. We would always not protein shake after working out on Fridays and Saturdays due to the heaviness and it making us throw up easier when combined with beer.

imblake35 karma

Thanks, that's exactly how I picture it as well. I want to keep the beers as low priced as possible, but being realistic, we won't be able to compete with Bud Light on price. Our beers can be the ones that you share a 6 pack with, not necessarily the ones you shotgun.

Bbaum95013 karma

Not to be a dick, but OP has been brewing beer for 30 years.... And hasn't been on a college campus where kids my age would kill for this stuff. As a fitness centered student at a big time sports school, kids would love to feel like they're doing less harm to their bodies and actually recovering from the added benefits of protein synthesis brought on by the supplementation in the beer. If this doesn't catch on, I'll be very very surprised. Our current mental state as health conscious individuals revolves around consuming things that are conducive to training at a high level. I personally run 80-90 miles per week, and would feel a lot less terrible about consuming a few of your fortified beers than, say, a couple blue moons.... Based on the fact that I can at least tell myself is doing something worthwhile in my body. You're doing the only thing you need to with your marketing, and that's giving health c conscious people a reason to use your product

imblake310 karma

Thank you, that's exactly what we're going for. We aren't going to replace the protein shake. But what we can do is offer a more fitness-minded alternative to something almost every young adult does: drink beer. We believe college campuses could be a huge market for us. Any ideas on how to get the word out? We're currently thinking of bringing on some campus reps (similar to the Red Bull reps you probably see everywhere).

Bbaum9509 karma

That would be a good bet. I personally would put together some type of informational handout/video describing that you're not trying to play into a fad styled niche and that you just want to give someone a product more tailored to their lifestyle that has two distinct uses. I would really just focus on coming off as honestly as possible. Marathoners and ultramarathoners always harp about the recovery benefits of beer due to the carbohydrate content, and collegiate athletes are no different. If you can explain in the simplest form that it can be beneficial if used in moderation, you could already corner the market. Sponsor a local 5k and offer samples and some info on the product and work your way up from there. Get as involved as possible with local running events as you could set up a booth and get some cheap exposure while testing your product with the general population

imblake32 karma

Great recommendations, thank you! The running community is our #1 target right now, and we plan on sponsoring plenty of races (including beer miles) once we really get into production.

my_name_is_cooler3 karma

I don't think that's nearly enough of a market to make a new product. Sure, there are a decent amount of people who like to work out and also like to drink, but most of the people who work out heavily aren't also heavy drinkers, not enough to profit off of at least. I'd be more inclined to trust the guy that's been in the business for a few decades than a guy trying to make a completely unheard of new product. Sure it could take off, and good for OP if he's smart enough to get it off the ground, but I'd say the odds are stacked against him.

Edit: Also, being a craft, target audience beer company, I'd imagine the price is pretty high. How many college students are going to spend a couple bucks per beer? When I drank in college, I drank to get drunk as cheaply as possible, not to improve my health.

imblake31 karma

I agree college campuses are not our #1 market. Our #1 market is fitness enthusiasts (runners, lifters, cyclists, etc.) who also enjoy drinking beer. Quoting a study I referenced in another comment: "drinking is associated with a 10.1 percentage point increase in the probability of exercising vigorously." So those who work out actually drink more.

This market is extremely large, we just need to get to them!

twistedlimb7 karma

I think you should keep up with it. I started my permitting process 3 years ago to open a hard cider company. In that time, gluten free has gotten huge. This is a big selling point for us, especially with female customers. You're not going to know how well your product will do until you get it out there- so enjoy and cheers!

imblake33 karma

Thank you! I love cider...do you mind sharing what your company is?

postingstuff72 karma

I'm all about fitness. Fitness beer down my throat.

imblake327 karma

I need you on my marketing team.

mick196779 karma

What is your bank balance?

imblake3381 karma

Well I guess I did say AMA, not AMAA...

The business account is currently almost dry at $3,800. We haven't started selling yet, so we have had plenty of expenses with no revenue. That's why we're turning to Kickstarter now to help ramp up production and distribution to get the beer on shelves!

I have a lot more in my personal account, so it's about time for me to double-down on my initial investment into the company.

Edit: Thanks for the gold!

KevBurnsJr54 karma

I pushed $20 to your kickstarter specifically because you answered this question with such candor. You're a good person. I can tell.

imblake321 karma

Thank you!

StreetPen47 karma

Props for this answer. I'd upvote twice if I could, so instead I'll contribute to your kickstarted. Link please when it's ready.

imblake331 karma

Thank you! Our Kickstarter is available here.

Trala_la_la11 karma

Just a comment on your home page, the kick starter countdown and the word kickstarter aren't linked to kickstarter... clicking them doesn't get you anywhere, your branding logo is linked to clickstarter though. More people would hit up your kickstarter page if the link was easier to find.

Also you should see if you can sponsor a local fun run race where they give out beer at the end. It's a great way to get in front of your target market.

imblake36 karma

Thanks for the tips on the website, didn't realize it was difficult to get to the Kickstarter. Will update it later today!

Also, we're planning to sponsor a bunch of races next season, including a beer mile, which is really an ideal fit for our beers.

cakeslol9 karma

i would like to invest into your company not via kick starter but to take a share of equity pm me

nick13163 karma

I am interested in equity in your company I think you have a great idea. Pm me

cakeslol29 karma

fuck off nick i made a offer first

Itz_The_Bees_Knees5 karma

[deleted]

FearKratos1010 karma

Reddit Shark Tank: Every Monday night on CBS

imblake37 karma

This needs to become its own sub.

MysteriousBoob56 karma

So does this mean I can just stop eating all other foods?

Trustme_Imalifeguard37 karma

I'm just going to go ahead and assume yes.

imblake333 karma

Well I guess I'll trust you since you're a lifeguard...

imblake311 karma

Believe it or not, it has been done before.

aStRoRdInArY44 karma

What are the macros in one 12 ounce can?

imblake362 karma

You can see this displayed better on our website, but here our are two beers. We have a light beer for cutting, and a heavier, full-flavor beer perfect for bulking:

Brewtein - 7g protein, 13g carbs, 5% alcohol, 178 calories

NutriBeer - 4g protein, 7g carbs, 4% alcohol, 122 calories

nofanyone24 karma

Have you consulted with an RD or sports nutritionist? I really don't see the advantage to an extra couple grams of protein while drinking. You've mentioned the detrimental effects of occasional alcohol consumption being overblown, ditto the effects of protein ingestion. Besides carbohydrates are protein sparing, you're not going to be going risking your precious muscle while having a few non-protein fortified pints.

Have these actually gone into production?

Have you talked to any bars that expressed interest in carrying you beer?

What would happen if you cut your losses now?

Guilt free drinking? Because a lack of protein was making you feel guilty? Not the alcohol calories, but the lack of protein calories?

imblake39 karma

We haven't worked with a nutritionist, but we do work extensively with what I would call a "protein expert" who has years of experience in the supplement industry. I agree you aren't risking muscle by having non-protein beers, as long as you get your protein elsewhere. But our beers make it much easier to hit your protein target for the day. If you're planning to have a few beers and watch the game, you can skip your protein shake and have 3 protein beers instead.

We only produced on a very small (5 gallon) scale so far, and we are partnering with an existing brewery to ramp up production and distribution. We think retail liquor stores will be a much bigger market for us than bars, so we've focused our efforts there and have had a lot of interest in the Chicago and St. Louis areas (keeping it local at first).

If I "cut my losses now," I'd be out a huge chunk of my personal assets, but ultimately life would go on. The risk is well worth the reward of doing something I am truly passionate about it my opinion. To see what I mean by guilt-free drinking, check out the comment u/Bbaum950 about feeling "less terrible" about drinking beer.

Letmeneckbeardbro16 karma

Do you discourage drinking beer while popping a boner?

imblake353 karma

I strongly encourage it. Puts a new meaning to getting swole off protein beer.

bustnutsonbuttsluts12 karma

How exactly does your beer work?

imblake336 karma

We developed a unique brewing process that allows us to add whey protein in a way that's sanitary (hugely important for brewing) and maintains the nature of the protein. So it means when you're drinking the beer, you get 7g of protein or 4g for our lighter beer. If you're going to be drinking, you can skip your protein shake after your workout and have a few protein beers instead!

There is some debate on the impact of alcohol on muscle growth and fat loss, but check out this article for a summary. Basically, alcohol doesn't have as much of an impact as most fitness circles like to say, and if you're going to be drinking anyway, might as well make it more nutritious.

PetersJohnson4 karma

So is it almost like you're dry hopping but with unflavored whey?

imblake36 karma

Yep, that's a great whey to put it!

bustnutsonbuttsluts3 karma

Awesome! I hope you do well!

imblake35 karma

Thank you!

nkronck11 karma

How do you jump the legal hurdles here? For distribution, advertising, marketing (fitness versus alcohol) sort of thing.

Great idea to explore, I'll keep an eye out for this!

imblake317 karma

The barriers to get into the brewing business have been huge. There are so many regulations on where you can distribute, how many barrels you can sell directly vs. to a distribution company, etc. It has taken us a long time to work through everything, and it's made me realize why the beer market is completely dominated by the top two players (Anheuser-Busch and MillerCoors).

We originally didn't start with much industry experience on our team, but we quickly realized that wasn't going to work out. There really was no replacement for having been through all this before. That's one of the major reasons we are partnering with an existing brewery rather than building our own right off the bat.

As for the marketing, there are some myths about how strict it is. For example, everyone says you cannot show someone actually drinking in an ad, but that's not true. Most alcohol companies have set this as a self-imposed regulation. We have the added concern of selling a health benefit, so we make sure we don't say "this beer will add 20 pounds to your bench press," but instead we state that our beer is fortified with additional protein and let the customers decide for themselves.

Brentonclt1 karma

I seem to remember an alcoholic sports drink getting shut down because their advertising/marketing/labeling included implications of health benefits of an alcoholic beverage. FDA regulations or something. Since I read that article I was under the impression that an alcoholic beverage cannot imply health benefits. It's also why nutrition facts and ingredients are not on alcohol bottles. Unfortunately I can't find it by search engines.

How are you going to market your product and avoid the pitfalls of previous alcoholic beverages with health additives, especially with your business's name? How will you convince regulators that you are not making a product that implies health benefits if they are trying to take you down for that reason?

imblake33 karma

Actually, alcoholic beverage companies can include nutritional facts (and quite honestly it should be required). Most choose not to because alcohol itself is very high calorie, and many consumers don't realize just how many calories they are getting in their beer. We are encouraging more transparency.

From a marketing standpoint, we are careful not to say that our beers will increase your bench press 20 pounds or anything like that. We simply state that our beers contain additional nutrients and are fortified with protein, then allowing our customers, who already consume whey, to make an informed decision on the benefits.

LikeADemonsWhisper8 karma

Maybe I've been reading broscience, but doesn't alcohol inhibit muscle development? Can you really drink a beer in 100% good conscience if you are on a strict nutrition program?

imblake321 karma

You have heard correctly, significant over-consumption of alcohol will inhibit muscle development. However, the impact of moderate consumption has been shown to have very little impact. Check out this article which summarizes many of the studies currently out there.

Ultimately, if you don't drink already, I wouldn't recommend starting just because there's a fitness beer. But if you have a few beers on weekends, you could benefit from our beers with greater nutritional content.

tisgdayfc10 karma

I've got some concerns on the concept of the idea. over consumption isn't good, but you would need to drink 6 or 7 beers at 7g a bottle to replace a single protein shake. at which point you are also drinking over 1000 calories. I feel like it is much more of 'gimmick' product than a healthy alternative.

imblake34 karma

Most protein powders have around 20g of protein per scoop, so you'd only need 3 beers to replace the protein in a typical shake. I don't see our beers replacing protein shakes for the vast majority of people. What we do offer is an easy way to hit your protein goals on nights where you are having some beers with friends.

wolfpacsoldier3 karma

I went to school for graphic design, how did you come up with the whole branding package (logo, label for the beer can and bottle,etc)? Did you come up with everything yourself? Did you work with a graphic designer at all?

imblake38 karma

When we were initially starting, I needed to go as low-cost as possible, so I worked with a friend who had minimal graphic design experience. As we progressed, I needed some more professional work, so I went through 99designs, which is essentially crowdsourcing for design. I had a ton of submissions and ended up choosing a designer who was very responsive to any changes I had and ensured the everything met the vision I had for our branding. So ultimately I had final say, but really needed some of the creativity our designer brought. Couldn't be happier with my experience there!

Amphetameister6 karma

If you ever expand to AZ, can I send you a résumé? This idea is just crazy fascinating to me, and I can envision it taking off. Nothing really like it on the shelves now, maybe your company would be the start of a new category of alcohol products.

imblake32 karma

That's the goal: create a new segment of alcoholic beverages that hasn't been done before! PM me if you're interested in coming on board.

They_took_our_Gold6 karma

[Serious] got any products for people who don't drink alcoholic beverages?

imblake332 karma

We do not. I think the market for non-alcoholic fitness products like whey protein, vitamins, etc. is pretty well-served already. I want to make products specifically for the runners, weight lifters, and any athletes who also unwind with some drinks on the weekend.

KevBurnsJr5 karma

What is your distribution channel? Online sales? Do you expect shipping costs to be reasonable?

imblake35 karma

Beer distribution is highly regulated, and at certain levels you must sell your beer to a distributer rather than directly to customers. That combined with shipping costs makes online sales a poor choice for brewing companies. We are currently working to partner with an existing brewery to leverage their equipment and distribution channels to keep our prices low starting out.

Socky_McPuppet5 karma

How hammered do I have to get to become completely ripped? Basically, do I have to become an alcoholic to achieve peak physical condition?

imblake34 karma

The only way to achieve peak physical condition is to do sit ups with a sip of beer at the top of each rep. Workout/drinking partner required.

mettlemetal5 karma

Since there's whey added to it, does the beer make you feel a lot fuller compared to a regular brew? I mean, could I still drink 6-8 of these like I tend to on the weekend? Cool idea by the way, I wish you success!

imblake35 karma

I would say not a lot fuller, but it does make a difference, especially if you're drinking our heavier beer, Brewtein. It's similar to some of the heavier beers out there today. I've never been able to down huge volumes of beer, but I've easily gone through 8 of these in a night.

yourfacesucksass4 karma

How did you initially feel about turning down law school? Were your friends and family supportive? Also, this is a great idea! This has to be a great success.

imblake38 karma

Thinking back, it was probably the most difficult decision I've made in my life. I had been preparing to enter law school for years, got into my dream school, and had a clear path to success. But as I got closer and realized I was not enthusiastic in the least about starting, I started wondering if I was making a mistake. Having that feeling with such an incredible opportunity in front of me was a red flag to me.

My family was shocked at first, especially my dad, who had pushed me to succeed and aim for the top law programs. He definitely thought I was making a mistake, but ultimately he said he would support me regardless of my decision and wanted me to be happy (but also not broke living in his basement haha). My friends were happy because it meant free beer for them!

bigmanpigman3 karma

As a 2L right now I'd say if you weren't sure about it, you definitely made the right decision. First year is so rough that you really need to be confident that it's what you want to do. Otherwise you're just putting yourself through hell.

Best of luck with your beer! it sounds awesome, I'll definitely buy some when it comes out!

imblake32 karma

Thank you, good luck this year. Hope the worst is behind you!

Ayyd0t3 karma

Lawyer, fitness and beer enthusiast checking in here. Trust me, you made the right call. A lot of bitter attorneys talk about how much the job sucks in general, but it's really all about passion. I wish I cared as much about the law as I do about my squats and my saisons, but I don't. I'm still figuring out what I want to with my career, and the law degree has honestly felt more like a burden than an asset at times. My general advice to people thinking about law school is that you should only go if you want to practice law more than anything else.

In your case, especially since you were set to go to Harvard, you basically wouldn't be offered any work-life balance jobs. I wish you the best of luck with this venture and look forward to trying your products soon. If it doesn't work out, you can always apply again to law school. You'll easily get in to a number of great schools the second time around.

imblake32 karma

Yes, ultimately it was the work-life balance (or complete lack thereof) that made me second guess law school. Yes, I could have gone into big law and made bank, but that was not something I was passionate about. Hope you find a job that blends your qualifications and your passions!

olaftheviking4 karma

How do you feel about this idea already being parodied?

FIGHT MILK! https://youtu.be/BEMlvjJ9uxo

imblake35 karma

I drink it every morning so I can fight like a crow.

roionsteroids3 karma

What does it taste like?

As someone who doesn't even lift, would the proteins be any useful at all? Does it weaken or potentiate ethanol?

imblake31 karma

Our website has more detailed descriptions, but we have two beers. One is a full-flavored wheat ale, so it's similar in style to a Blue Moon or Shock Top. We also have a light lager with a subtle citrus taste from Cascade hops. We chose the amount of protein so that neither beer's taste is affected by the protein at all.

There are plenty of benefits to protein even if you don't lift. Check out this article for four big ones. The one that people often forget is that you burn more fat when on a high protein diet. There's nothing specific about the interaction of protein and alcohol, but knowing you can have a beer afterward provides some great motivation to work out!

Quandon3 karma

Have you ever thought of supplementing an alcoholic, milk based beverage with a natural protein source? Crow's eggs perhaps?

imblake37 karma

That's a great idea! I'll call it fight milk!

ConceptualTrap3 karma

I had an idea to add Vitamin C & D to beer, especially winter ales. Is this something that you think would work?

imblake32 karma

I would have to do some more research into the science, but I definitely think there could be some benefit there. There are already some un-filtered ales, like English real ale, that have substantial amounts of vitamin B, so those might be good candidates to start with.

I say brew some up and see how it goes! I'd love to try it.

Roadwarriordude3 karma

I'm going to ask the real question here. Does it taste good?

imblake32 karma

Yes, both beers are delicious, depending on which style you prefer. Brewtein is a wheat ale (similar in style to Blue Moon), and NutriBeer is a light lager with a subtle citrus flavor.

GalacticCow3 karma

Any plans to expand to other kinds of beers (IPAs, red ales, etc.)?

imblake33 karma

As a beer lover myself, I would definitely like to expand to other types of beers! However, since we are already getting into a niche with fitness beer, we wanted our initial beers to appeal to as wide of a range as possible. That's why we went with a wheat ale and a light lager to start with...these shouldn't be far off from what most Americans are used to in their beer, but we do offer a little more flavor. I couldn't in good conscious serve someone one of those watered down light beers everyone drinks.

davesmithmad0992 karma

What is the source of protein in the beer? what is the ingrediant that you add for protein?

ansermachin3 karma

He said whey protein in another comment.

imblake33 karma

That is correct. We use whey, which is the ideal protein source for muscle growth from a biological value standpoint.

__Shadynasty_2 karma

Do you plan to branch into other drinks? I love this idea, but I hate beer, haha

imblake32 karma

We do plan to branch into other drinks, and I'm really excited about some of the ideas we've had so far! Beer was a natural starting point for us since it's the easiest to produce and the most widely consumed. But we think a pre-mixed drink (think lime-a-ritas or something similar) would give us more flexibility to reduce carbs and still produce a great-tasting drink.

What specifically would you like to see?

sigmatic_minor2 karma

Question, isn't it true that if present in the body, alcohol will always be used before any other available fuels/energy sources (eg, the protein in this beer)? So say if I had this beer, all the alcohol would be burned first before my body even gets to dealing with the protein?

I love beer but I think I'd be better off having my usual post workout protein and then enjoying a beer (I personally love a local zero carb beer, insulin doesn't spike!) Later on after I've mostly digested the protein and good stuff from my meals before?

Is this correct or..? I'm happy to be corrected obviously, just going off stuff I've read before!

imblake32 karma

You are 100% correct that alcohol takes priority in the substrate hierarchy, suppressing fat, carb, and protein oxidation. However, typically, that protein can still be used to rebuild muscle at some point. Take a look at this article on alcohol's impact on muscle growth. Essentially, extreme over-consumption of alcohol has been shown to negatively impact muscle growth, but moderate consumption really hasn't been shown to have an impact.

Our belief is that you shouldn't start drinking just because there is now a fitness beer, but if you were going to drink anyway, you could benefit from our more nutritious protein beer!

uamQ1 karma

why have you chosen to use Whey protein?

is it a price thing? or is it just the only type that works in this way

imblake31 karma

I'm going to quote the 2015 protein report here. Whey protein is "the undisputed king of proteins" in the fitness world. In summary, it is easily digested by your body and has an amino acid content that is very useful for building muscle. We initially considered using soy protein, but that has been shown to have some negative side-effects for men.

shampooticklepickle1 karma

wanna expand to ireland? lmk if you guys are planning to go international.

imblake31 karma

We are beginning distribution in the US, specifically the Midwest region, but we'd love to expand if there is demand. Think there would be a lot of interest in Ireland?

Toad321 karma

If you are adding the B vitamins, does that make this a hangover free beer? I suspect that would be a bigger selling point.

imblake32 karma

We are not adding B vitamins, but there are un-filtered beers that are full of B vitamins. Hangovers are very complex and can't be countered with just B vitamins, but it has been said to help. Thanks for the idea!

iphoneluver1 karma

Where are you based out of? Being from a place where craft beer is as easy to get as macro brews could either help you get started or just be "another craft beer from ___" or if there is no craft beer where your from there could be no market for it.

imblake31 karma

We are based in Bloomington, IL, which is halfway between Chicago and St. Louis. It's an interesting market because there is plenty of craft beer available, but Budweiser products are HUGE. We hope to take some more of the market from the dominant top two (Anheuser-Busch and MillerCoors) and bring it to us little guys!

Tinfoil_ninja1 karma

Fascinating concept. I'm one of those people that would probably buy your beer, but there's one thing I can't believe no one asked.

What does your beer taste like? Ale, Lager? Hoppy notes? Citrus? What kind of hops do you use? What could you compare it to?

imblake31 karma

Check out our website for a more detailed description, but we have two styles. We chose the amount of protein to ensure that the taste wouldn't be compromised whatsoever.

Brewtein is an American wheat ale with Strisselspalt and Amarillo hops. Some popular beers that are similar to this style are Blue Moon and Shock Top.

NutriBeer is a light lager with Cascade hops to give it a subtle citrus flavor. I haven't really found a beer I can compare this to, because the citrus is very natural, unlike beers with artificial flavoring added such as Bud Light Lime.

koldfusion471 karma

There is a big movement in chocolate milk being a great recovery drink right now because of its ratio of carbs to protien. What is the ratio of carb to protien of your two products?

imblake32 karma

I love chocolate milk after a workout. Our carb to protein ratio is about 2 to 1, so under that of chocolate milk. However, most people get plenty of carbs from other sources, so they should refill glycogen stores.

mxtrav1 karma

Any plans for more styles of beer? Give me some stouts, porters, and strong ales!

This sounds awesome, I love beer but find it hard to fit in the diet, so this is perfect!

imblake32 karma

As a beer lover, I definitely want to branch out to other styles! We went with some common styles to begin with since we're already in a niche market. I have brewed plenty of other styles personally, and I'm now brewing up a peanut butter protein stout...we'll see how it turns out!

dangerouskoala1 karma

Hi Blake, thanks for doing this AMA!

How familiar are you with beer miles? (shoutout to /r/beermile) I think your beer might be of interest to that community - they love beer, fitness, and are a quickly expanding group with national events starting to pop up around the US. Would you consider sponsoring a pro beer mile athlete or an event? Could be a cool platform for your product.

Edited: a word

imblake32 karma

I definitely want to sponsor beer miles! I cannot think of a better fit for our beers, and those runners are truly impressive. Do you think r/beermile would be receptive to a post about our beers?

gtsturgeon1 karma

What kind of advertising do you have planned?

How did you get your brand identity?

imblake32 karma

We are hoping our Kickstarter will do some of the advertising for us, which it definitely has. We were even featured on the Shape magazine website, which we're pretty proud of! In the future, we are looking to focus on more of a physical presence by sponsoring races and fitness events that provide beer afterward. These are 100% our target customers.

Our brand identity came about because we really wanted to stand out. We're not just another company claiming to have the best tasting beer, but we have beer for fitness buffs. With that in mind, we took our concept to 99designs and used corwdsourced design to come up with all of our logos and website.

lasershipdude1 karma

Can you make halal beer?

imblake315 karma

I actually read about a non-alcoholic halal beer. Unfortunately I think the market for a non-alcoholic, halal protein beer is a little too niche for us...

shinypenny011 karma

Did you consider partnering with an existing supplement manufacturer and producing a beer under their brand? I'm just wondering, seen as your target customer is already a suplement consumer, seems like the supplement brands would be well served entering this market as well.

Also, do you see light beer as your biggest opportunity? You mentioned going after Macro beers as opposed to taking some of the existing craft space. Are your fitness enthusiast target audience likely current light beer consumers?

imblake32 karma

We have partnered with a supplement manufacturer to supply our protein, but we have not specifically sought their brand. We want Supplemental Brewing to be something that stands on its own as a company that cares about fitness and cares about beer. We think it'd be a tough sell to get beer lovers to buy a drink from ON Nutrition. Light beer is likely our greatest opportunity, and we're even looking to expand to zero carb mixed drinks fortified with protein.

toredthegreat1 karma

How does it taste?

imblake31 karma

Our website has more detailed descriptions, but we have two beers. One is a full-flavored wheat ale, so it's similar in style to a Blue Moon or Shock Top. We also have a light lager with a subtle citrus taste from Cascade hops. We chose the amount of protein so that neither beer's taste is affected by the protein at all.