Government program provides $124,000 to promote craft beer overseas
July 9, 2004 - The United States Department of Agriculture has awarded the Association of Brewers $124,000 to help promote American craft brewers and beer in foreign markets.
The AOB announced it will receive the funds as part of the USDA's Market Access Program. The MAP, created in 1978, aids in the creation, expansion, and maintenance of foreign markets for U.S. agricultural products.
More than 40 craft breweries currently export or are interested in developing foreign market opportunities. The AOB estimates craft brewers exported 14,000 barrels (a barrel is 31 gallons) valued at $4.8 million in 2002.
"I think this award shows good support for the AOB's promotional strategies on behalf of American craft brewers," said Charlie Papazian, president of the AOB, "and it gives us a chance to show Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) and the Representatives and Senators in Congress that supported our application, what we can do for American craft brewers under this program."
The program is allocated on a July 1- June 30 fiscal year. The AOB will organizing an advisory committee of craft brewer members who are exporting to help assess the most effective ways to allocate funds. Funding may include seminars, trade shows, legal service, trade missions, enhanced import networking opportunities and meetings connecting craft brewers with potential exporters of their products.
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