ALEXANDRIA, VA – America’s 3,300 licensed, independent beer distributors are celebrating the excitement that new, entrepreneurial brewers bring to the beer industry and consumers across the country during American Craft Beer Week, May 11-17, 2015. During the week, the culture and contributions of local breweries across the United States will be highlighted.
According to data released this March by the Brewers Association (BA), craft brewers – as defined by BA – enjoyed continued growth during 2014 as American craft beer production volume increased 18 percent. The data suggested that craft brewers produced more than 22 million barrels of beer last year, constituting 18 percent growth for the segment.
Craft brewers now represent more than 10 percent of the beer volume sold in the U.S. marketplace – the first time the craft segment has reached double-digit volume.
More than 3,400 breweries were in operation across the United States in 2014, representing a 19 percent increase from the previous year. That number includes more than 600 new breweries that opened for business across the country in 2014. According to the BA, 99 percent of operating breweries are craft breweries.
“Craft beer continues to provide a significant contribution to the American beer industry,” said NBWA President & CEO Craig Purser. “This success is due in large part to the effectiveness of the open and independent distribution system that allows access to market for brewers of all sizes and a state-based regulatory system that works to level the playing field between brewers, distributors and retailers.”
“NBWA is proud of the role that independent beer distributors play to help the craft beer industry thrive,” Purser continued. “The tremendous growth in craft beer sales underscores the excitement of independent beer distributors in partnering with America’s craft brewers to help them reach a wide network of retailers and increase their value.”
According to a recent survey of NBWA distributor members:
- 92% of distributors carry products from at least one local, in-state brewer
- 96% of those distributors carry multiple brands of local brewers
- 96% say in-state brewer sales are up
- 94% of distributors have added at least one new brewer partner in the past year
Purser added, “Thanks to thousands of different distribution channels, today’s marketplace offers an unparalleled number of styles, varieties and flavors of beer to consumers from coast to coast. American Craft Beer Week is a great opportunity to celebrate this variety.”
For more information about American Craft Beer Week, including celebratory events in your area, visit www.craftbeer.com/pages/news-and-events/american-craft-beer-week.
The National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA) represents the interests of America’s 3,300 licensed, independent beer distributor operations in every state, congressional district and media market across the country. Beer distributors are committed to ensuring alcohol is provided safely and responsibly to consumers of legal drinking age through the three-tier, state-based system of alcohol regulation and distribution. To learn more about America’s beer distributors, visit www.AmericasBeerDistributors.com. For additional updates from NBWA, follow @NBWABeer on Twitter, watch NBWA videos on www.youtube.com/NBWABeer and visit www.facebook.com/NBWABeer.