I am one of those people that doesn’t watch the news. This is one of those things that absolutely baffles my mother, but I’ve just found that in general I’m MUCH happier not watching the things that are being reported on. I do try to stay somewhat in the loop, so that I can speak with marginal intelligence about current events. I read the Skimm in my email daily. Occasionally I’ll scroll through the local paper… I even read whole articles where my handsome husband is the feature.
This week, even living in my bubble, it was hard to ignore the State of The Union. Before you get too excited or angry, I don’t want to talk about the State of the Union address. Instead, I want to give you a quick glance at the state of the craft beer industry.
Nationwide, 2019 was a great year in craft beer! The Brewer’s Association reports a 4% production growth year over year for small and independent US breweries. Craft beer was responsible for 550,000 full time equivalent jobs in the US, and we contributed more than 79 billion to the economy. There are a record number of breweries in the United States- 8,000 and counting.
In Ohio, the craft industry also saw steady growth. There are 294 currently operating breweries in Ohio with 28 already in the works to open in 2020. We’re ranked 8th in the nation as far as number of breweries, but 4th when we talk about production. We’ve got an amazingly active and awesome brewers association. We have beer trails. We have an amazing app designed to take you to local breweries. We’ve even got our own craft beer seal. Ohio craft beer is doing big things, and we’re excited for continued growth.
In Licking County, we are thrilled with the state of the industry. Craft beer is absolutely thriving. We’ve got a Licking County Beer trail, and we’re about to launch the 2020 version of it. There are 9 breweries in the county, and all of us are doing well. It’s fun to see how different we all are, there is absolutely something for everyone in this county. Almost all of us are tackling awesome projects for 2020, so expect to see amazing things coming your way soon.
It is exciting to be a part of an industry that is perpetually growing and changing. It’s even more exciting to be a part of this incredible community. We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it a thousand times more, craft beer people are really just the BEST people. Those involved in the industry, and those that come in to share it with us really just make following this dream so much fun. We’re happy to be adventuring and growing with you.