BOSTON — Over the years, the Massachusetts craft beer scene has supported the growth of 100+ breweries and brewpubs throughout the state. With this growing popularity in craft beer, it has become critical that brewers have a collective voice advocating for and promoting their interests. This is where the Massachusetts Brewers Guild (MABG) comes in – a state-level organization that’s committed to protecting the rights of craft brewers. The MABG has been supporting the industry since 2007, and for six years, Rob Martin, founder of Ipswich Ale Brewery, has been leading the charge. Early last week, however, the Guild appointed Rob Burns, co-founder of Night Shift Brewing, as their new President.
In March 2015, after becoming inspired by the energy behind the Brewers Guilds in other states, Burns decided to add his voice and support to the Massachusetts chapter. Starting out vocal from the get-go, he quickly got involved in Government Affairs and found himself testifying at a State House committee in support of House Bill 245 – a petition for change to the archaic wholesale distribution laws. Over the past year, Burns has continued to increase his involvement in the Guild, most notably by heading up the hiring process of their new (and first) full-time Executive Director, who starts this fall.
With this new role, Burns will focus on “promoting the hell out of MA brewers” and aims to “make more people aware of all the great beer in the state, help start-up brewers make quality beer, and get more people in the industry hanging out together so we can build a tight-knit community.”
What will this mean for Night Shift Brewing? Burns will have to shift a lot of his focus away from the brewery, but ensures that the value added is huge. He asserts that, “helping other breweries, building relationships, and helping promote the state’s beer scene will benefit all including NSB.” With a solid team of 11 other board members, the Massachusetts Brewers Guild is in a great position to make 2017 an even better year for craft beer in MA.