Lots of Empty Barrels to Wear

In case you have been living in a vacuum over the past few weeks, apparently these are hard times. Funny how things seemed to turn around so fast … or maybe not so funny, depending on your perspective.

We hear that beer is pretty much recession-proof. We have long argued that this is true to a degree, but, there is beer, then there is beer.

Beer can be made from the cheapest cereal ingredients and have practically no grain content and it is still called beer. Or, beer can be made with only malted barley, be full of body and flavour, and it is still called beer.

There can be a fair price difference between these two products. Is there a difference on “recession-proofness”?

It could be that beer is one of those treats that you afford yourself when other treats might just be considered too dear. And, it might be that it follows that good, full-flavoured beer fills out the concept of “treat”.

It is always hard to say how the concept of affordable luxury will manifest itself. According to an article we just read in the Edmonton Journal, 12 per cent of individuals with a net worth of over $20 million have given up their extramarital lovers “for financial reasons” in the past six months.

Now, there is an example of cutting back rather than cutting loose.

According to the Nielsen research firm, the items that get cut back during a recession are eggs, carbonated beverages, cups and plates and tobacco.

We took a quick poll around the brewery here and found out that it was absolutely true as nobody had cups and plates on their shopping list for this week.

So, what does Nielsen say are the recession-proof items? Well, those would be dry pasta, candy, beer and pasta sauce.

So, fire up the macaroni with marinara sauce topped with Hershey Kisses and be sure to have a glass of Lead Dog Ale on the side.

Hormel Foods says that it is cranking up production of canned goods like Spam, chili and stew. We are still working on the beer pairing for that.

Research also apparently shows that marital problems may spike (even for the rich folks that gave up the extramarital lovers, maybe) due to stresses about money and due to cabin fever when a tightened budget keeps people at home and on each other’s nerves.

Then, we learn, that according to sex therapist Dr. Ruth Westheimer, “This economic tsunami is going to have a negative effect not only in the boardroom but in the bedroom as well.” This is probably not where you want your train of thought to go when you think of a tsunami in the bedroom.

With the holidays coming, all we know is that we like everything in moderation, including our stress. Remember what is important, keep that front and centre, and treat yourself to a good beer (and maybe a bedroom tsunami) now and then.

This column is courtesy of the Yukon Brewing Company, an organization that writes a column that is recession-proof because, well, it’s in a free publication.

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