The Economic Impact of Craft Beer!

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Blog 35

Thank You Craft Brew!

Talk about an impact – billions of dollars, hundreds of thousands of jobs – that what craft beer is doing for the economy in the U.S.  The Brewers Association reports that over $30 billion was contributed to the economy last year from the craft brew industry!  Let’s take a closer look:

The Portland Business Journal reports that Oregon ranks number one for per capita economic output in the craft beer industry. The industry supports almost 15,000 jobs in Oregon. One of the nation’s oldest craft brewers guilds is the Oregon Brewers Guild.  The Oregon craft brew scene is massive with over 200 brewing facilities in over 65 cities. You don’t have to go far to find something unique in the Beaver State.  How about starting in Portland, currently home to more breweries than any city in the world!

Over $500 million was paid in wages to employees related to the craft beer industry in Illinois last year.  Want to celebrate craft beer for a week?  Go to Chicago – soon!  Check out the Chicago Craft Beer Week, running from May 15-25.  Over 300 venues around the city are involved, many of which are members of the Illinois Craft Brewers Guild. They have to stretch the definition of a week to fit in all the opportunities this celebration brings to craft beer.

Opportunity, opportunity – as the 4th most populous state, Florida is bound to explode with more craft brewers.  At about 60 now and pumping $875 million into the economy, there is a lot of room to grow more.  And if growth is going to happen, it will happen in great part because of the Florida Brewers Guild.  Consumers can experience some of these beers at the Palm Beach Summer Beer Fest, a display of some of Florida’s great craft brewers.

Topping out at an economic impact of nearly $300 per drinking age adult, Alaska is the place to be if you want to explore what craft beer can be in an adventuresome environment. The Brewers Guild of Alaska does an excellent job of promoting an industry that spans from its northernmost member, Silver Gulch Brewing and Bottling Company in Fox, Alaska, to its southernmost member, in Sitka, Baranof Brewing Company.

Next week, at the Craft Brewers Conference, hosted by the Brewers Association many more brewers from all 50 states will be present as the craft beer industry meets to help share knowledge and insight with each other in Denver, Colorado.

Thanks again to all the craft brewers!  Keep up the good work – we appreciate it!

We're Here to Help

Dear friends in the alcoholic beverage industry,

As we as an industry, nation and planet collectively try to navigate this unprecedented period the coronavirus has brought us, We’d like you to know that we at Craft Beverage Consultants (the other CBC!) are here to answer any question you may have (or not know you have) about not just surviving this time but positioning yourself to thrive as soon as social distancing measures allow your business to function at full capacity again.

If you schedule a free 60-minute phone or video conferencing consultation with me or any of my 11 highly specialized colleagues, we’ll help you figure out any of your immediate and/or longterm business needs, or “everything but the staffing,” as we like to say. We’re not high-pressure sales kind of people, especially these days, so you don’t have to worry about fending off annoying pitches. Make an appointment on our website or Facebook page, or just call us the old-fashioned way at 314-768-0220.

Our experts have a combined 150 years in the alcoholic beverage industry, with deep knowledge in everything from sales and distribution, production, and regulatory compliance to marketing, package design, event planning, IT, (social) media, hospitality, and even values-based executive coaching. 

For example, we can coach you through this season when chain accounts have canceled their spring, in some cases, fall resets and distributors have drastically cut orders. Our director of business strategy and compliance can save you money – now – on excise taxes, caution you to avoid naming your beers in ways that risk alienating your buyers (Wuhan Wheat? Coronavirus Cream Ale? Groan. No.), and secure TTB approval for the tastefully named beers you do make. Our creative director and web team can get your e-commerce site up and running and launch a social media campaign that keeps you top of mind for current and future customers. Our director of storytelling can put you in front of the press so you can tell your story to your community. 

Once you’re ready, we can look forward together. Now is the time to talk about post-virus. We all suspect the legal landscape to look different. But how? And how do you prepare yourself in a way that positions you to charge out of the gate ready to maximize the potential and profit of whatever the “new normal” turns out to be? Please get in touch so we can talk about it. 

CBC’s roster includes local and regional clients like Epic Brewing, Logboat Brewing, Piney River Brewing, SudWerk Brewing, Waves Cider and Common Cider Company, just to name a few.  The agency was founded in 2004 by Jacob and Beth Halls, formerly known as Convergence Consulting; Rick Laxague, joined as a partner in charge of sales, marketing and distribution consulting in 2019. 

Rick hase close to 20 years of experience, a bulk of which was with Crescent Crown Distributing in Arizona. His last role there was Area Sales Manager for the dedicated craft beer division, coaching and leading a sales team to be nationally recognized. In early 2014 Rick helped take a regional brewery national as their Director of National Accounts and increase that segment of their business from 30,000 cases to almost 300,000 cases in two years, an increase that equates to $4.8 million in IRI dollar sales. 

Co-founder Jacob Halls brings 17 years of experience in regulatory compliance, business strategy, marketing and craft brand management to the company. In his former position as craft brand manager for the N.H. Scheppers Distributing Company in Columbia, Missouri, Jacob helped lead his team to winning the 2016 Distributor of the Year award from New Belgium and to a nomination for the Brewers Association’s Distributor of the Year award. Jacob is also the founder and director of the South East Craft Beer Fest and several other industry specific charitable event marketing festivities. Beth Halls is Director of Business Operations and Coordinator of Charity Operations for the festivals and events run by CBC, such as the South East Craft Beer Fest, MO Bacon & Bourbon, and many more. 

Again, please reach out to us for anything.  CBC can be reached at (314) 768-0220 or at

We look forward to meeting/talking soon.


Rick Laxague, Jacob Halls, and Beth Halls