If you’ve ever wondered exactly what the term “craft brewer” entails, the Brewers Association has the answer.
The directors of the trade association that represents the majority of U.S. brewing companies has voted to change the BA’s designation of “small” in its definition of a “craft brewer.”
The term “small” now refers to any independent brewery that produces up to 6 million barrels of traditional beer. The previous definition capped production at 2 million barrels. The changed definition now is in effect.
In the Brewers Association’s bylaws, two classes of membership (Professional Packaging Brewers and Associate membership) have been redefined with a qualifying barrelage of 6 million barrels vs. 2 million barrels.
The association cited several reasons for the change, including the recognition that “small” is a descriptive term relative to the overall size of the industry.
“Thirty-four years have passed since the original small brewers tax differential defined small brewers as producing less than 2 million barrels,” says Nick Matt, chair of the Brewers Association board of directors and chairman and CEO of F.X. Matt Brewing Company. “A lot has changed since 1976. The largest brewer in the U.S. has grown from 45 million barrels to 300 million barrels of global beer production. …The craft brewer definition and bylaws now more accurately reflect and align with our government affairs efforts.”
The industry’s largest craft brewer is The Boston Beer Company.
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