Even after the setbacks of Covid-19, the United States reached a record number of breweries in 2021. According to the Brewers Association, there are now more than 9,000 operating beer producers in the U.S.
Announced in the Brewers Association’s “Year in Beer” report, that number includes 710 new breweries opened across all 50 states and the District of Columbia, offsetting the 176 that closed their doors. In 2021, the craft beer industry provided 400,000 total jobs, with 140,000 being those directly working at breweries.
The Brewers Association, a nonprofit trade association that “promotes and protects American craft brewers,” cites that federal economic relief programs were key to the resurgence of the industry. Key acts that helped, and that the Brewers Association lobbied for, include the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) and the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act (CBMTRA). These funds helped offset the costs and damages from not only the pandemic, but the supply chain crisis endured this year, the report says.
A source of industry insights and data analysis, the Brewers Association predicted in an optimistic statement that craft beer production will exceed the levels of 2019 (finally) and that on-premise taproom and brewery sales will increase in 2022. We’ll definitely raise a glass to that.