News Carlsberg to Sell Famed Ringwood Brewery

Carlsberg Marston’s Brewing Company plans to close the famed Ringwood Brewery in Ringwood, England and move production of the brands such as Old Thumper to other Carlsberg plants. The company announced that the brewery would close in January 2024.

It is a move that has similar tones to Sapporo deciding to close the historic Anchor Brewing in San Francisco earlier this year. Like Anchor, Ringwood Brewery was an inspiration to a generation of craft brewers. Ringwood was founded in 1978 by longtime UK brewer Peter Austin who also had a consulting business and did equipment sales. In the 1980’s as the American craft brewing scene was starting to take off, there were few if any equipment suppliers who sold turn-key small-scale brewing systems in the US. Finding consultants to help new craft brewers learn authentic brewing techniques was also nearly impossible. Peter helped several early American craft brewers start and supplied his brewing systems to early pioneers.

Ringwood was purchased by Marston’s, the British pub and hotel operator in 2007. In 2020 Marston’s merged its brewing business, including Ringwood Brewery, with Carlsberg UK.

Like Anchor beers, sales of Ringwood beers have declined in recent years as long-established craft beers with a deep history fail to resonate with new consumers. It was reported that just 10 years ago, the Ringwood Brewery was operating at its full capacity of 42,000 barrels annually but production has declined by as much as 75% since then. The brewery was listed for sale by Carlsberg in June of this year and after failing to find a buyer announced that they would close it down and sell the property.

The announcement has brought a flurry of angry postings on social media from fans of the iconic brand.

More on the story here.

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