Top Five-O

The Brewers Association has released the list of the top 50 breweries based on sales production in 2006.

The association also reported that in 2006 77.7% of the craft beer produced was made from the top 50 craft brewing companies. Additionally, 34 out of the top 50 brewing companies in the U.S meet the Brewers Association’s definition of a craft brewer.

“Beer made by small, independent and traditional breweries is definitely an American success story,” states Paul Gatza, Director of the Brewers Association. “There’s a change in lifestyle going on. People are trading up and that is what is creating such strong demand for craft beer”.

With just under 1400 small breweries the segment eclipsed 6.7 million barrels in 2006. The fastest growing craft beer sector in 2006 was microbreweries (those under 15,000 barrels a year). Sales were up 16%, showing customer support for local breweries. Total craft beer industry sales have grown 31.5% over the last 3 years and early 2007 indicators point toward accelerating sales growth.

Twenty-two states are represented in the top 50 brewing companies list, according to the Brewers Association. California hosts (7) top breweries. Colorado has (5) and Oregon and Wisconsin each host (4) top producers.

The remainder of the top 50 operate from New York (3), Pennsylvania (3), Vermont (3), Washington (3), Illinois (2), Massachusetts (2), Minnesota (2), Missouri (2), Alaska (1) , Louisiana (1), Maine (1), Michigan (1), Montana (1), Ohio (1) and Texas (1).

For the top 50 list go to: