US passes 4,000-brewery milestone

America now has over 4,000 beer breweries in operation, just tens short of its all-time record, the country’s Craft Beer Association has announced.

Bart Watson, chief economist at the Craft Beer Association (Photo: CBA)

Bart Watson, chief economist at the Craft Beer Association (Photo: CBA)

It is the first time that brewery numbers have been about the 4,000 mark in around 140 years, the association estimates.

Secondary sources say the high point of brewery numbers in the US was 4,131 in 1873. However, given the quickening rate at which new breweries are opening, a the record is expected to be broken in the next couple of months.

“Although precise numbers from the 19th century are difficult to confirm, this is almost certainly the first time the United States has crossed the 4,000 brewery barrier since the 1870s,” said Bart Watson, the Craft Beer Association’s chief economist.

“Given the strong pace of openings (an increase of 1.9 per day), it is likely that later in 2015, or early in 2016, there will be more active breweries in the United States than at any point in our nation’s history,” he said.

The speed with which independent brewing has swept through the US beer market has completely transformed the scene of just forty years ago.

Mr Watson said: “This is a remarkable achievement that would have been unthinkable in late 1970s, when the number of American breweries dipped below 100.”

The geographical spread of breweries has also been praised, indicating that the craft beer boom has been nationwide phenomenon not restricted to one part of the country.

The CBA says that 75% of Americans over the age of 21 live within 10 miles of a local brewery.

“The map of U.S. brewing has continued to diversify. There are now breweries in more than 2,000 unique cities across all 50 states,” Mr Watson said.

The definition of an active brewery is one that has been registered with the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax Trade Bureau (TTB). It discounts contract brewers, meaning it is for businesses that both produce and actively sell beer to consumers, the CBA said.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please note that comments are subject to our posting guidelines in accordance with the Defamation Act 2013. Posts containing swear words, discrimination, offensive language and libellous or defamatory comments will not be approved.

Subscribe to our newsletters

Fine Wine Sales Administrator

Davy's Wine Merchants
London, UK

Content Manager (Maverick Drinks)

ATOM Supplies
London, UK

Graphic Designer (NPD)

ATOM Supplies
Tunbridge Wells, UK

Press Officer

Speciality Drinks
London, UK

UK Private Clients Manager

Ditton Wine Traders
London, UK

London Business Development Manager

Maisons Marques et Domaines UK Ltd

Head of Buying - Spirits

West London, UK

Liquid Production Supervisor

ATOM Supplies
Tonbridge, Kent, UK

Sales Account Manager – Cotswolds

Haynes Hanson & Clark
Gloucestershire, UK

Communications & PR Manager

Islay, UK

International Bulk Wine and Spirits Show

London,United Kingdom
26th Feb 2018

Spirited London

London,United Kingdom
15th Mar 2018

Prowein 2018

18th Mar 2018
Click to view more

The Global Malbec Masters 2017

the drinks business is proud to announce the inaugural Global Malbec Masters 2017

The Global Sparkling Masters 2017

the drinks business is thrilled to announce the launch of The Global Sparkling Masters.

Click to view more