Like any new business, starting a craft brewery is a risk, and not all risks reap rewards. El Cajon Brewing Co. was established in 2009, and first opened its doors on October 16, 2011. To get off the ground, the project was partially funded by the City of El Cajon and the State of California, which provided $600,000 in loans to El Cajon Brewing. But even with that help, the brewery is struggling.
First off, they need pay back a good portion of those loans. According to an excellent article on ABC 10 News, El Cajon City Councilman Gary Kendrick said that 90 percent of the funds came from state redevelopment money, and the city put up the rest ($60,000). From the article:
“Part of the loan is forgivable and part of it has to be paid back,” Kendrick said. He told 10 News the city will not lose money because the loan is secured by the equipment inside. He said it’s worth more than the debt. “The city could repossess the equipment and sell it on the open market or the city could lease it to the new vendor,” said Kendrick.
The owner of the El Cajon Brewing told 10 News that they have 10 beers on tap and business is going well now, but they’re waiting to hear what the courts will decide. For now, El Cajon Brewing will try to stay open as long as possible. CBB hopes the brewery, city, state and courts can all work it out.
We call on all beer lovers in El Cajon and surrounding San Diego to support El Cajon Brewing by stopping by to grab a few beers, get a good meal or fill a growler full of craft beer.