Frederick County, Md., has seen some big-time growth within its beverage industry during the last three years, leading the state in the number of wineries, farm breweries and distilleries.
While recent growth has been impressive, Frederick County has a long tradition of craft beverage production, beginning with Brewer’s Alley in 1996 and Linganore Winecellars, Maryland’s largest winery, founded in 1972. Today Frederick County is home to 14 wineries, a lively craft beer scene with 12 breweries, led by Maryland’s largest craft brewery, Flying Dog, and three farm breweries. There are also four distilleries throughout the county.
Now home to more than 30 total alcoholic beverage producers, this industry generates jobs in agriculture and manufacturing, strengthens Frederick’s tourism industry and attracts young talent to the community. Are they worried about a bubble? Hardly — the county would like to encourage even more beverage businesses and continue to crush it in that arena.
To further grow this industry and make it even easier for entrepreneurs to launch their businesses, the Frederick County Office of Economic Development(OED) has created an innovative “How to Start a Winery, Brewery, Distillery” guide for Frederick County, Md. This how-to guide navigates the federal, state and county process for starting a craft beverage business.
In addition to the Guide, OED developed a craft beverage brand for this thriving industry to further promote both tourism and economic development.
“There are many exciting things brewing in Frederick County. We wanted to create a guide that helps put all the steps together in a visually-pleasing and easy to follow format and a logo that helps to tie everyone together,” said OED Director Helen Propheter. “Frederick County has been a leader in many ways for this industry, from the first farm brewery, first cidery and first meadery in Maryland to hosting the Maryland Craft Beer festival since 2010. This new resource and branding demonstrates our ongoing commitment to supporting these innovative businesses and making it easier to do business in Frederick.”
To obtain a “How to Start a Winery, Brewery, Distillery” guide, e-mail the Frederick County Office of Economic Development.
The new guide was created with input and advice from the Frederick County Division of Planning, Frederick County Liquor Board, Brewers Association of Maryland, Maryland Wineries Association, Maryland Distillers Guild and several local wineries, breweries and distilleries who provided feedback first-hand from their experiences going through the process.