US craft brewers sell estimated US$14.3B worth of product in 2013, up 20.2% from year-ago period, according to Brewers Assn.; craft beer now has more than 14% of total US beer market

MCLEAN, Virginia , April 2, 2014 () – Boston Beer Company, maker of Samuel Adams beers, maintains its top spot among U.S. craft breweries in a year that saw the industry take in about 20% more in sales than in 2012 and brew nearly 8% more beer.

Craft brewers sold an estimated $14.3 billion in beer in 2013, according to the Brewers Association, up from $11.9 billion in 2012. That brings craft beer's share to more than 14% of the total U.S. beer market. Craft beer accounted for about 10% of the nearly $100 billion in beer sales in 2012, the association says.

"In 2013, craft breweries reached new all-time highs in production volume and dollar sales," said the assocation's staff economist Bart Watson in a statement with the report. "Beer lovers continue to demand high-quality, fuller-flavored and local beers from small and independent craft breweries."

Total beer sales of $93 billion were essentially flat in 2012, according to food industry tracking and consulting firm Technomic, despite an increase in craft beer sales. And while craft beer volume rose, total beer production fell 1.4%, the firm's State of the Industry report says.

Boston Beer Co., Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., New Belgium Brewing Co., and the Gambrinus Co., which owns Spoetzl and Bridgeport breweries, as well as Pete's Brewing, have held the top spots in the Brewers Association's annual top breweries list for five years. And Boston Beer has been the largest craft brewer since the association began keeping a chart in 1995, Watson says.

Now in its 30th year, Boston Beer Co. continues to diversify its beers to reflect the evolving marketplace, founder/brewer Jim Koch says. "We've seen the craft beer drinker evolve from novice to tastemaker. Today's drinkers have a global palate and are coming to expect more interesting and in-depth flavors from brewers – similar to what they're discovering in the food universe," he says. "We've always experimented with exotic ingredients and invested ourselves in this taste exploration and recently created a nano-brewery last year at our Boston Brewery, allowing us to experiment with more than 700 10-gallon batches of beer each year. Of those, about 15 beers went to market in 2013."

Boston Beer Co., which shipped about 3.4 million barrels in 2013, a 25% increase over 2012, also ranks No. 5 among all U.S. brewers, behind Anheuser-Busch, MillerCoors, Pabst Brewing Co., and D.G. Yuengling & Son Inc., according to the association's overall top 50 brewing list.

Biggest climbers on the craft brewery list include Ballast Point Brewing Co., up 17 points to No. 29, Southern Tier Brewing Co., up 6 points to No. 31, Sweetwater Brewing Co. of Atlanta and Left Hand Brewing Co. of Longmont, Colo., each of which moved up five spots to Nos. 19 and 38, respectively. Firestone Walker Brewing Co. and Founders Brewing, both rose four spots to Nos. 16 and 26, respectively.

New entries among the top 50 craft breweries included Sixpoint Brewery (Brooklyn, N.Y.), 21st Amendment Brewery (San Francisco), Gordon Biersch Brewery -- the production facility in San Jose, Calif., not the brewpubs, which are owned by CraftWorks (No. 39) -- and Duvel Moortgat, which acquired Boulevard Brewing in Kansas City, Mo., in October 2013, and owns Brewery Ommegang of Cooperstown, N.Y.

Top 50 Craft Brewing Companies

(Based on 2013 beer sales volume)

1. Boston Beer Co. (Boston)

2. Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. (Chico, Calif.)

3. New Belgium Brewing Co. (Fort Collins, Colo.)

4. Gambrinus (San Antonio, Tex.)

5. Lagunitas Brewing Co. (Petaluma, Calif.)

6. Deschutes Brewery (Bend, Ore.)

7. Bell's Brewery, Inc. (Galesburg, Mich.)

8. Duvel Moortgat USA (Kansas City, Mo. & Cooperstown, N.Y.)

9. Brooklyn Brewery (Brooklyn, N.Y.)

10. Stone Brewing Co. (Escondido, Calif.)

11. Matt Brewing Co. (Utica, N.Y)

12. Harpoon Brewery (Boston)

13. Dogfish Head Craft Brewery (Milton, Del.)

14. Shipyard Brewing Co. (Portland, Maine)

15. Abita Brewing Co. (Abita Springs, La.)

16. Firestone Walker Brewing Co. (Paso Robles, Calif.)

17. Alaskan Brewing Co. (Juneau, Alas.)

18. New Glarus Brewing Co. (New Glarus, Wisc.)

19. SweetWater Brewing Co. (Atlanta Ga.)

20. Great Lakes Brewing Co. (Cleveland, Ohio)

21. Anchor Brewing Co. (San Francisco)

22. Long Trail Brewing Co. (Bridgewater Corners, Vt.)

23. Summit Brewing Co. (St. Paul, Minn.)

24. Oskar Blues Brewery (Longmont, Colo.)

25. Full Sail Brewing Co. (Hood River, Ore.)

26. Founders Brewing Co. (Grand Rapids, Mich.)

27. Rogue Ales (Newporr, Ore.)

28. Victory Brewing Co. (Downingtown, Penn.)

29. Ballast Point Brewing Co. (San Diego, Calif.)

30. Ninkasi Brewing Co. (Eugene, Ore.)

31. Southern Tier Brewing Co. (Lakewood, N.Y.)

32. Cold Spring Brewing Co./Third Street Brewhouse (Cold Spring, Minn.)

33. Flying Dog Brewery (Frederick, Md.)

34. Odell Brewing Co. (Fort Collins, Colo.)

35. Stevens Point Brewery Co. (Stevens Point, Wisc.)

36. Bear Republic Brewing Co. (Cloverdale, Calif.)

37. Lost Coast Brewery and Cafe (Eureka, Calif.)

38. Left Hand Brewing Co. (Longmont, Colo.)

39. CraftWorks Restaurants & Breweries, Inc. (Chattanooga, Tenn. & Louisville, Colo.)

40. Breckenridge Brewery (Denver, Colo.)

41. Karl Strauss Brewing Co. (San Diego, Calif.)

42. Blue Point Brewing Co. (Patchogue N.Y.)

43. Sixpoint Brewery (Brooklyn, N.Y.)

44. BJ's Chicago Pizza & Brewery, Inc. (Huntington Beach, Calif.)

45. North Coast Brewing Co. Inc. (Fort Bragg, Calif.)

46. Uinta Brewing Co. (Salt Lake City, Utah)

47. Allagash Brewing Co. (Portland, Maine)

48. Saint Arnold Brewing Co. (Houston, Texas)

49. Gordon Biersch Brewing Co. (San Jose, Calif.)

50. 21st Amendment Brewery (San Francisco, Calif.)

Source: Brewers Association.

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