It’s three thousand and forty, to be exact: that’s the number of craft breweries in the United States as of June of this year. It’s a respectable number to say the least. Not only are we living in a time when there are the most breweries in the United States EVER, but we now live in a country where the majority of its citizens live within 10 miles of a craft brewery. And, with 1900 more breweries around the country in planning stages, it’s safe to say that the neighborhood brewpub is alive and well and could possibly be doing even better than it already is. 3000 breweries and counting...
Looking at the half-way point of 2014, the Brewers Association has analyzed the numbers and craft breweries have seen sustained growth. They’ve sold 10.6 million barrels of beer so far, compared to the 9 million barrels they sold in the first half of 2013. Production is up 18%. That isn’t too shabby. Which is why so many brewers/entrepreneurs are still trying to break into the scene. And, why established breweries can keep expanding. Distribution radii keep growing, and those who have really made it big are opening facilities in other states.
To see how well your state ranks in the craft game, there’s a state-by-state Craft Beer interactive over at the BA’s website. Choose a state and see what kind of economic impact craft beer is having. See how many breweries there are per capita (that’s per 100,000 folks over the age of 21), and see how many breweries are in the planning stages for your state. It’s interesting to know that in New Mexico in 2013, there were 1.2 gallons of craft beer brewed per drinking age adult. Just north in Colorado, it jumped to 11.7 gallons, or 93.6 pints. That math also breaks down as enough beer for one person in one month in Colorado.
And, there’s a whole new spin on what craft is doing for the economy. According to a joint study between the Beer Institute and the National Beer Wholesalers Association, for every person employed in a brewery, 45 more jobs are created in other industries. There are all of the hard working folks in agriculture, construction, finance, insurance, real estate, manufacturing, retail, and transportation that are getting a leg up because of beer. Cheers to them.
So, drink up. Your steady consumption of craft beer will continue to drive these production numbers even higher. Can you imagine what the numbers might look like at the end of 2014? We haven’t even gotten to Thanksgiving or Christmas, and we all know how much beer needs to be consumed to make it through those family-filled endeavors. And, if you drink enough to warrant your favorite brewery hiring another employee, you are aiding your community’s economic stability by ensuring jobs for 45 others. Not only do you have good taste, but Tapped Life would dare to say that you are a patriot.
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