US craft beer exports rocket

Exports of US craft beer rocketed by 49% this year with a total of 282,526 barrels valued at US$73 million shipped in 2013. 

According to a recent report by the American Brewers Association, Canada remained the industry’s largest export market with shipments almost doubling up 92% by volume, while the category’s next two largest markets, Sweden and the UK, saw export growths of 15.5% and 7.9% respectively.

Shipments to the Asia Pacific (not including Japan) increased by 73% accounting for 44,228 barrels bolstered by emerging markets in Singapore, up a massive 379%, Hong Kong, up 150% and Thailand, up 99%.

Australia saw growth of 5.4% while Japan’s market for US craft beer also increased by 3.2%.

Brewers Association (BA)

Brewers Association (BA)

Bob Pease, chief operating officer of the Brewers Association, said: “Exports of American craft beer continue to expand in the international market, reflecting craft brewing’s overall success as an industry. New distribution agreements for U.S breweries throughout Europe and Asia are helping to grow exports.

“This sustained growth is a testament to the innovation of small and independent American craft brewers and the enthusiasm of beer drinkers internationally. With more beer exported around the world, the challenge now is to ensure that beer quality is preserved in all cases, so consumers are assured a positive experience. This is an area of focus for the Brewers Association and the Export Development Program.”

US exports are supported by the Brewers Association’s Export Development Program (EDP), founded in 2004, which uses funds from the United States Department of Agriculture Market Access Program to generate interest in US craft beer at trade shows, festivals and seminars.

Eric Wallace, president and co-founder of Left Hand Brewing Company and chair of the BA’s Export Development Program committee, said: “Expanding the footprint of American craft beers internationally is an important goal for small and independent craft brewers. We are thrilled to see the increasing appreciation of and demand for American craft beer in markets outside of the U.S..

“The EDP will continue to promote American craft beers through its focus on quality and diversity to ensure they flourish abroad over the long term.”

The Brewers Association is the not-for-profit trade association representing small and independent American brewers.

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