Widmer begins major $22 million expansion

Oregon brewer Widmer Bros. is beginning a $22 million expansion (via The Oregonian).

The company broke ground on a new building that will house fermentation tanks and an additional kegging line. Once the expansion is completed, the brewery will nearly double its annual capacity to 550,000 barrels.

The expansion will allow Widmers make and sell more of its hefeweizen – its distinctly Northwest take on a beer style originated in Germany – which accounted for 82% of its sales last year.

Widmer Bros. plans to emphasize its name more prominently on the label, with “Hefeweizen” a bit smaller, in hopes of training customers to ask for a Widmer rather than a hefeweizen, said co-founder Rob Widmer.