According to a mid-year report just released by the Brewers Association, the craft beer industry is continuing to sustain its growth by ringing up double-digit gains in sales and volume for the first six months of this year. Specifically, sales and volume for craft brewers were up 15% for sales and 13% for volume through the month of June. Compare that to last year at this time when sales were up 14% and volume was up 12%. In terms of barrels, for this year so far, 7.3 million barrels were sold compared to 6.4 million at this time last year.
Should this pace continue (which we assume it will), it would be the fourth straight year of double-digit sales and volume for craft beer, which has seen volume sales increase every year since 1969 and dollar sales increase every year since 1997.
The report also found that there are currently 2,538 breweries (2,483 of which are craft) operating in the United States as of the end of June. That’s an increase of 446 since last year at this time. Breweries in planning that the report knows about? That would be 1,605 compared to 1,252 last year.
This continued growth is certainly evident in South Carolina. Currently, there are 12 operating breweries open in South Carolina, with Quest, Benford, and Conquest just opening this year. Brewery 85 will open its doors later this year. River Rat and Swamp Rabbit are also shooting for openings by the end of the year. And those are just the ones we know about. The growth of craft beer in addition to the recent ease in regulations in South Carolina make clear that much more growth is on the way for our state.
The press release about the report is available here: http://www.brewersassociation.com/pages/media/press-releases/show?title=brewers-association-reports-continued-growth-for-u-s-craft-brewers
(Credit: Brewers Association for the graphics).