Yesterday the Brewers Association announced that the United states had broken the 2,500 mark for the number of breweries or brewpubs operating in the county. That's 422 more than May of last year. That's a pace of more than one new brewery a day. Here's how things look since 2009:
2013--2514, an increase of 422 in the past year.
2012--2092, an increase of 345 in the year.
2011--1747, an increase of 132 in the year.
2010--1615, an increase of 93 in the year.
2009--1522, an increase of 63 in the year.
Now for a note about the GBH identity. I worked with designer, artist, and long-time friend, Kyle Fletcher (@kyleluvsew), to develop a brand that not only reflected the craft beer community, but actually grew with it. We sketched, wrote, gathered inspiration and drank sufficiently. And when we weren't looking, his cat Sophie contributed her thoughts through sleepy osmosis.
She has a twitter account: (@soapfeet)
We went in a dozen different directions over a few weeks. The many iterations helped us hone in on the values of GBH, the particular vision we had for it, and where we thought the industry was heading aesthetically — but most importantly, where we thought we could take it. In the end, we chose the direction Kyle called "craftministration" — part focused on the history of "craft" and part "administration" of the industry at large. I've always loved the way Kyle thinks.
To meet the goal of reflecting the values, but also the vigorous growth of the industry, "Craftministration" has what my friend and collaborator Edwin Lee of Ghost Lab calls a living element, a data-driven aspect of the mark that changes over time according to a market condition. That's where the roman numeral comes in. The roman numeral may look like a throw-back, but it's actually quite timely and future-focused. That roman numeral updates every time the Brewers Association tallies the number of breweries in the US. And today, that number reflects 2,514, (MMDXIV), in the new header.
So cheers to the brewing industry. We've hit yet another record high. And with over 1,500 breweries in planning, there's no end in sight at the moment. While many long-standing beer geeks opine on the possibilities of a bubble, or a saturation point, the rest of the county is turning on to beer and creating the economic conditions for sustainable growth. It's going to get more and more competitive to get a slice of the market, but for now, the pie keeps getting bigger as well.