Category Archives: news

A Neat Way Forward

Breakside is going with an employee ownership program.

I like this quite a bit, because craft beer lives and dies on the local scene and the local involvement. Even when breweries get as big as Sierra Nevada, events come along to remind them that their local community matters.

So I appreciate the choices Breakside’s ownership made here, rooting further into the community instead of selling out to a larger corporation.


On Selling Out

If you’re paying attention to the craft beer scene like I am, there is a lot of flux going on right now. Partly because of market saturation, partly because some of these startups from over twenty years ago have gotten big enough to pose a problem for the gigantic breweries, and partly because after over twenty years, some of these craft brewers are finding themselves in a place where maybe it’s time for them to retire. Or just try something else.

So, you have problems like the ones outlined here.

And I find this a fascinating insight into the industry for a few reasons. First, you have the “what’s this person going to do?” question, which is always a challenging one.

Second, you have an insight into what happens when a small player gets glommed onto the big machine of industry. It looks a lot like that machine doesn’t care about the gaps that people on the ground floor see.

Third, you have the impact on those people who worked for the small player. How does the culture really change?

The more I think about it, the more I wonder if many breweries would really be happier if they kept their ambitions modest.



Tax Breaks

It would appear that there’s support for permanent tax breaks for brewers, amongst members of the government.

Interesting. Part of me is reluctant to endorse tax breaks for any business that is doing well-and craft brewers are increasing their share of the market.

On the other hand, craft brewing is always very local, most of the resources spent locally, so that money stays in the communities and less profits going to tax havens and the like.