All it takes is a night out at the Holy Hound taproom, Liquid Hero brewery or other York drinking establishments to see that the craft beer industry is booming.
And a lot of those beers are made in PA, including several from York County.
But I didn’t realize just how big this industry is until I was poking around online and found some data provided by the Brewers’ Association, a group aimed at supporting craft brewers and beer enthusiasts.
Here’s what I learned:
The Pennsylvania craft beer industry has an economic impact just shy of 2 billion dollars.
That’s right– 2 billion, with a “b.”
Keep in mind, economic impact does not mean “profit” or “sales.” It’s a much more complex figure that looks at how the industry affects the economy.
Pennsylvania has the 4th largest craft beer economic impact in the country, after California, Texas and New York.
In terms of output, Pennsylvania produced 1,788,556 barrels of craft beer in 2013.
That’s right– barrels. (Also, as it happens, with a “b.”)
That’s the 2nd highest production in the country, beat out only by California, which generated 2,948,895 barrels in the same year.
This becomes more impressive when you consider that the state of Pennsylvania consists of 46,058 square miles, compared to California’s 163,707.
I’d surmise that nationally-distributed Pennsylvania brands like Victory, Straub and the Samuel Adams Pennsylvania Brewing Company play a prominent role in this tremendous output. (The database doesn’t break it down by brand). Still, that’s a lot of beer.
In terms of actual craft breweries, Pennsylvania has 108, ranking 7th in the nation.
That number has jumped from 88 in 2011, matching the national trend of increasing numbers of independent breweries nationwide.
Still curious? Check out the Brewers’ Association website and dig around for yourself: