Hardship is not universal in these challenging times. Many breweries are doing well, and in fact thriving, despite the slow-to-no growth in the craft beer sector. For those breweries that are doing well and looking to add capacity or additional on-premise space, buying a brewery that has closed can be exceptionally beneficial and far less costly than building out a space from scratch.
“Instead of calling contractors and lawyers, breweries are perusing real estate listings and finding turnkey opportunities to ferment new futures,” according to Joshua Bernstein in an article for First Key Consulting, the brewing and beverage industry consulting firm.
Although there has not been a tidal wave of brewery closings across the US, closings have increased significantly in the last few years from 219 closures in 2018 to 319 in 2022. The peak was 346 closures in the pandemic year of 2020. This year is expected to increase over last year with over 400 closures. Still not bad given that there are about 10,000 breweries total in the country. But chances are increasing that a brewery has shut down or will soon close in an area near you over the course of the next year or so. If you are looking to expand into a new facility, it might be prudent to wait.
“The changes in brewery sales growth trends have catalyzed a more sustainable circular economy within the industry,” said Mike Gerhart, senior advisor technical services at First Key Consulting. “Shuttered facilities and equipment otherwise destined for the scrap market have become fertile grounds for growth and exciting business opportunities. This new dynamic minimizes waste while maximizing value.”
See the full article here.