A-B, small Virginia brewery strike distribution deal

Charalottesville, Va., brewery Starr Hill announced “that Anheuser-Busch will become the master distributor for Starr Hill, giving it the benefit of Anheuser-Busch’s logistical expertise in managing distribution, as well as access to more independent and chain retail accounts.”

From the press release:

“We’re proud that our products have been added to Anheuser-Busch’s select list of craft beers offered through its world-class distribution network,” said Mark Thompson, founder and president of Starr Hill Brewery. “Our beers have won twelve awards so far, eleven from the Great American Beer Festival and one from the World Beer cup. This alliance now offers us unparalleled distribution resources and the expertise to distribute our award-winning beers beyond our core base in Virginia. We founded Starr Hill with the mission of sharing great beer with the world, and this represents yet another step towards fulfilling that dream.”

The Daily Progress newspaper reported that “before going nationwide, Starr Hill will focus on selling its beer across Virginia for the first year of the distribution deal.”

“We’re committed to providing new and exceptional beverages to those adult consumers who are looking for specialty products,” said Dave Peacock, vice president, marketing for Anheuser-Busch, Inc. “Starr Hill has already developed a loyal following among craft beer consumers in Virginia, and together with our wholesaler network, we’re looking forward to enhancing the distribution and sales support for these award-winning beers.”

Brewing and marketing decisions will remain the responsibility of Starr Hill and its management. Starr Hill produces 3,161 barrels (31 gallons each) of beer in 2006.