The Brewers Association (BA) — the not-for-profit trade group representing small and independent craft brewers by its definition — today released its second annual list of the 50 fastest growing small and independent craft brewing companies of 2018.
Representing 27 states across the United States, these small and independent breweries experienced a median growth of 163 percent with the median size being 1,350 barrels of in-house production in 2018. Breweries on the list range from 50 barrels to more than 40,000, and grew from less than 70,000 barrels collectively in 2017 to more than 170,000 barrels in 2018. As a group, these brewing companies represent approximately 10 percent of total craft growth by volume for the year and include 13 brewpubs, 35 microbreweries and two regional craft breweries.
“Even as market competition continues to increase, these small and independent breweries and brewpubs demonstrate there are still growth opportunities across a diverse set of regions and business models,” said Bart Watson, chief economist, Brewers Association.
The list presented includes only small and independent breweries. Growth is measured based on production at their own facilities. Breweries must have opened by December 31, 2016, or earlier to be considered. It only includes breweries that reported 2018 production to the Brewers Association’s annual Beer Industry Production Survey; breweries with staff estimates or data from state excise tax reports were not considered. Breweries also needed a validated production figure for 2017, either via the production survey or state excise tax data.
A comprehensive State of the Industry report will be delivered during the 2019 Craft Brewers Conference and BrewExpo America held from April 8-11 in Denver. The association’s full 2018 industry analysis, which shows regional trends and sales by individual breweries, will be published in the May/June issue of The New Brewer, available in May 2019.