Colorado Brewer’s Guild Announces Economic Impact of Colorado Craft Beer on State Economy

Colorado has emerged as the state of craft beer, at the very forefront of the craft brewing industry. We rank among the top states for number of breweries, per capita production, and economic impact. The Colorado Brewers Guild (CBG) identified 232 craft brewers in the state in 2013 – a whopping 109% growth in the number of breweries since the recession ended in 2009. When asked to encapsulate the Colorado brewing scene, John Carlson, CBG Executive Director, says “The great thing about the Colorado craft brewing industry is the artful blend of manufacturing prowess, pure soul, agricultural ties, and innovative technology. Colorado is the state of craft beer and this study shows it with academic precision.”

[Record Economic Benefit]
Colorado craft brewers recorded total economic benefits of $704 million in 2012, growing to $826 million in 2013. Converting mostly raw materials like malt, hops and water into the craft beers sold domestically and internationally, the industry tallied $249 million in direct value added in 2013. In 2012 and 2013, an estimated 4,493 and 5,014 people respectively, worked in the brewery and restaurant sides of the business.

[Brewery Growth in 2014]
The majority of Colorado brewers project growth in excess of 20% in 2014. Despite massive growth, brewers ranked factors that could influence even more responsible growth. The factor that brewers indicated would most encourage business expansion today is lower taxes, followed by financing, increased market access, and less regulation.

[Brewers Build Community and Give Back]
Colorado brewers reported giving more than $1.4 million in gifts, a $200,000 spike in reported donations from the previous survey. Nearly, 93% of brewers reported giving to charity organizations, 91% reported participating in fund-raising events, and 62% reported engaging in volunteerism. Survey responses show overwhelmingly, that craft brewers and brewpubs are highly active philanthropists in their respective communities. They volunteer or give money to a wide variety of causes and groups. Other charitable activities included sponsoring community art groups and local dinners for the homeless, organizing a Turkey Trot, fundraising for local civic groups, and donating to local food banks.

[About the Colorado Brewers Guild]
The Colorado Brewers Guild (CBG) is a non-profit trade association representing the leading Colorado craft breweries and brewpubs. CBG is dedicated to the improvement of business conditions and serves as an advocate for its members. CBG itself sponsors a variety of beer events each year designed to increase the awareness and appreciation of Colorado-brewed beer. For more information about the Guild, visit

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