Out-of-state craft beer winners in Missouri

2012-07-20T14:00:00Z 2012-07-23T14:16:29Z Out-of-state craft beer winners in MissouriBY EVAN S. BENN • ebenn@post-dispatch.com > 314-340-8348 stltoday.com

Out-of-state craft breweries are expanding their Missouri beer footprints. 

Following Thursday's look at the strong gains posted by St. Louis-area craft breweries, the same state sales report shows that out-of-state breweries also are thriving here.

Thirty-two non-Missouri craft breweries sold a combined 71,212 barrels of beer in the state in the 12 months that ended June 30. The leaders of that pack — Boston Beer Co., 29,983; New Belgium, 14,989; and Sierra Nevada, 3,517 — were the three biggest U.S. craft beer producers by volume last year.

Other winners include Deschutes Brewery of Oregon, which didn't begin Missouri distribution until January, halfway through the fiscal year. It still cranked out 1,660 barrels here, more than many of its out-of-state competitors and more than all but three St. Louis-area craft breweries. Avery Brewing Co. of Colorado posted a 93 percent year-over-year gain. And Stone Brewing Co. of California sold 2,175 barrels in Missouri, the fourth most of the list below.   

Is Colorado beer cooling off? The biggest losers here are Left Hand Brewing Co., Boulder Beer Co. and Twisted Pine Brewing Co., three Colorado breweries that posted year-over-year declines of 34, 31 and 25 percent, respectively. Combined, the three sold fewer than 900 barrels of beer in Missouri in the past year. (Ed. note: As a Twitter follower astutely pointed out, it's unfair to say all Colorado beer is cooling off in Missouri; three of the top five brewery gainers by percentage are from Colorado.)

Some other things to keep in mind as you look at the numbers:

• The numbers listed in the middle column are barrels of beer sold in Missouri only from July 1, 2011, through June 30, 2012.

• One U.S. beer barrel equals about 31 gallons.

• The numbers in the right column are the percent change from fiscal year 2011, which ran from July 1, 2010, through June 30, 2011.

• Breweries marked with * did not distribute in Missouri for the entire 2012 fiscal year.

• Source: Missouri Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Control.

Evan S. Benn is the assistant editor of Go! magazine. He also writes about beer and food, and he is author of the 2011 Post-Dispatch book "Brew in the Lou: St. Louis' Beer Culture - Past, Present and Future," available here. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook.

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