Widmer Times Two

Oregon brewer to double capacity with expansion project

As craft beer grows in popularity, regional craft brewers are more and more looking at expanding their distribution base to fuel growth. Such is the case at Widmer Brothers Brewing Co. Since Anheuser-Busch bought a 25 percent stake in the company, the Oregon brewery has been expanding nationally by plugging into the A-B distribution network.

And now they are investing in their infrastructure to accommodate future growth. Widmer Brewing is in the process of constructing a 52,000-square-foot, three-level addition that will feature new fermentation facilities; the relocation of keg washing and filling; new cold keg and bottle storage; an additional shipping dock; and an expanded lab and office space.

Six additional fermentation tanks will double the capacity at Widmer to 550,000 barrels annually.

“We’ve been growing at double digits for the last four or five years,” co-founder Kurt Widmer said. “This will allow us to meet the ever-increasing demand … and free up some capacity to pursue some beer styles that we haven’t been able to do.”

The expansion of the brewing facility is projected to be completed sometime next spring.