The National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA), which represents the interests of America’s 3,300 licensed, independent beer distributors, gave a shot out to the craft beer industry on the heels of yet another sales milestone.
“While 2013 overall industry volumes to date are soft, craft beer continues to provide a significant contribution to an expanding and evolving industry,” said Craig Purser, NBWA president and CEO. “NBWA is proud of the role that independent beer distributors play in the development of a thriving craft beer industry. 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.”
In case you don’t feel like clicking on that link in the first paragraph and missed the news yesterday, according to mid-year data released by the Brewers Association (BA), in the first six months of 2013, small and independent American brewers saw dollar sales up 15 percent and volume up 13 percent. During the first half of 2013, approximately 7.3 million barrels (bbls) of beer were sold by small and independent American brewers, up from 6.4 million bbls sold during the first half of 2012. The BA also reported that there are 2,538 breweries operating in the U.S. as of June 30, 2013, an increase of 446 breweries since June 2012.
“This success is due in large part to the effectiveness of the 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,” Purser continued. “Today’s marketplace offers an unparalleled number of styles, varieties and flavors of beer to consumers from coast to coast, and American consumers are demonstrating they enjoy this vast variety.”