Beer is awesome! What else is new, right? I’ve been thinking about doing a beer post and started looking around the internet for data. If you’re a fan of beer, you’ve noticed the rise in new brewers over the last decade. In fact, Denizens Brewing Co. just opened across the street from my office. I’ve heard rumors our engineering team is looking at ways to boost our wifi signal, allegedly of course. The explosion of craft beer has been great for beer nerds like myself. I love trying a new beer with friends and I keep finding new favorites. I prefer the IPAs but will try just about anything.
Off to the internet I went and I found data from the Beer Institute. The site has a downloadable excel with a wealth of beer information. The bar chart below shows active brewer permits by state and year. Use the slide filter to see the growth in permits issued.
Looking at the growth a little closer you can see YoY for the US as a whole and for each state. My home state of Maryland needs to step it up, while 40% is great, I know we can do better. Some states on the other hand are growing fast since 2004. Keep it up!
But the growth isn’t necessarily a great thing if you’re trying to break in the market. I’ve talked to the brewer of a local restaurant in Bethesda, MD and he says we’re going to start seeing many brewers close up shop. Many individuals are entering this space and not all will survive. But in the meantime, I’ll sample their beer.
Clearly California has the most active brewer permits, but it is the most populous state. How does 2012 brewer permits look when population is factored in? I found some data on adult population and blended it with the brewer data. Note that adult here means 18 years of age or older, not 21, the legal drinking age in the US. I won’t go into it here much but I will say that I believe the drinking age should be 18, but the driving age should be 21.
Vermont has the least adults per active brewer permit and if you live in Mississippi, I’m sorry. I hope your state is importing other craft brews to help you out.
So now that I got you thinking about beer, you’re probably about to stop reading and head for the fridge. Wait!!! In order to help you make a selection, I scraped the web for prize winning beers. Using import.io, a fantastic web scraping tool, I downloaded a table of the Great American Beer Festival winners from 2013.
Use the filter to select the Category to view the Gold, Silver, and Bronze winners. I’m going to have to use this chart next time I’m on a beer run.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I just opened one of my favorites, Loose Cannon from Heavy Seas out of Baltimore. Have a great day!