Craft beer production up 11% in 2010

Craft Beer Sales Climb 11%

The Brewers Association today announced craft bewers produced 11% more beer in 2010 than 2009, and that retail dollar sales increased 12%, representing a growth of more than 1 million barrels (31 gallons per U.S. barrel).

“Beer lovers increased their appreciation for American craft brewers and their beers in 2010,” BA director Paul Gatza said for a press release. “Craft brewers’ stories resonate with Americans who are choosing small, independent companies making delicious beers in more than 100 different styles.”

The Association also reported a growth in the number of U.S. breweries, with 8% more breweries than the previous year. In 2010, there were 1,759 operating breweries. Craft brewers produced 9,951,956 barrels, up from an adjusted 8,934,446 barrels in 2009.

In 2010, craft brewers represented 4.9% of volume and 7.6% of retail dollars of the total U.S. beer category. The Brewers Association estimates the actual dollar sales figure from craft brewers in 2010 was $7.6 billion, up from $7 billion in 2009.

As an interesting side note, Gatza said: “We also found that three percent of craft brewer barrels, by volume, are distributed in cans, confirming a growing trend.”

A more extensive analysis will be released on March 24 during the Craft Brewers Conference in San Francisco. The Association’s full 2010 industry analysis, which shows regional trends and sales by individual brewery, will be published in the May/June 2011 issue of The New Brewer.