Beer ATMs Threaten America’s “Waiter & Bartender” Recovery

For 87 straight months, America's recovery has been dominated by one 'job'...

Well over 5 years ago, we first dubbed the economy under Barack Obama as the "Waiter and Bartender recovery", because while most other job categories had grown at a moderate pace at best, the growth in the category defined by the BLS as "Food Service and Drinking Workers" has been nothing short of spectacular.

How spectacular? As the chart below shows, starting in March of 2010 and continuing through April of 2017, there have been 87 consecutive month of payroll gains for America's waiters and bartenders, an unprecedented feat and an all time record for any job category. Putting this number in context, total job gains for the sector over the past 7 years have amounted to 2.378 million or just under 15% of the total 16.4 million in new jobs created by the US over the past 87 months.

As a tangent, putting the "waiter and bartender" recovery in the context of America's manufacturing sector, the following chart shows that while nearly 816,000 "food service and drinking places" jobs were created since 2014, over the same period the number of manufacturing jobs created has been just 107,000. Also, after six months of increases, in May manufacturing jobs posted their first drop since last October.

 

Which is why recent headlines from Vinepair should terrify policy-makers across the nation, as Climateer notes, that could all be about to end... Bartenders are being replaced by Robots...

According to Metro, Brooklyn-based Randolph Beer has come up with an innovative “Beer ATM.”

We know– we don’t understand how we didn’t come up with it first, either.

Located on South 4th Street in Williamsburg, Randolph Bar does indeed have real-live bartenders and a normally operating bar– though why would anyone spring for that when a self-serve beer ATM is within arm’s reach? As Food & Wine reports, the beer ATM functions as a self-service wall of taps.

In exchange for a credit card at the bar, the customer is given a beer ATM card; all you have to do is insert the card into the slot above the beer you’d like and choose the size of the pour. Pours range anywhere from 1 – 12 ounces, perfect for those who can’t commit to an entire brew.

The concept not only allows consumers to serve themselves, but also provides opportunities to taste-test multiple unknown beers for a fraction of the cost. Not only does the client benefit from getting a quick taste, the bartender is saved lots of time (and aggravation) from pouring multiple samples.

The pressure is totally off, and the consumer can take as long as they want in finalizing their beer decision.

Make America Drink Again?

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