This week the Brewers Association released their annual preliminary review of the US brewing industry. Overall the news is very good, especially for small beer producers like we'll be. While the overall market growth is beginning to slow, the small, local and independent sector (as defined by the BA) is still holding its own with 8% growth. As this market grows, it's going to create new opportunities for companies like ours.
The BA also released the total US brewery count (>5,000), which means breweries are well on their way to catching up with the 10,000+ wineries across the US. In the Philadelphia area alone, we know of more than 5 new breweries/expansions, including our friends at ARS who are set to open next weekend.
When we hear reports on these growing statistics the question always comes up. Does the US have room for more breweries? We'd definitely like to think so. If you look back at the records before prohibition in 1900 there were over 7,500 breweries. Or if you compare the US to other countries we actually rank 8th in breweries per capita (100,000 people). So there's definitely still room for expansion in our small little part of the world.
I think the small, local craft beer sector is where the market is eventually headed anyway. As craft beer drinkers begin to dominate the drinking scene, they're demanding more variety and an increase in locally focused ingredients and recipes. Macro beer companies can't shift and adapt with these changing tastes. It takes a locally focused small-batch brewery, like ours will be, to be to be able to keep up.
So we're committed to staying on top of the trending tastes and adapting what we brew to what you (our customers/friends) want. Look for the next post where I'm going to break down the trends of 2016 and I will give you a sneak peek of what we think next years hot flavors will be.