Arkansas breweries produced more than 1.2 million gallons of beer in 2017, a better than 35 percent increase over 2016, according to the State Alcohol Beverage Control Division.
Breweries under the state microbrewery permit made 784,398 gallons of beer or the equivalent of 25,303 barrels in 2017, according to government figures, compared with 539,315 gallons, or 17,397 barrels in 2016, an increase of 45 percent. One barrel of beer equals 31 gallons. Holdings operating under Microbrewery Restaurant Permits made 430,381 gallons of beer or 13,883 barrels in 2017, up 25 percent from 345,535 gallons or 1
All told, Arkansas Breweries made 1,214,779 gallons of beer, or 39,186 Barrels, in 2017, increased 37 percent from 884,850 gallons or nearly 28,550 barrels from the previous year. The result comes from a total of 31 active permits for small-scale breweries and 16 licenses for small-scale breweries, as the documents show.
The state's three largest breweries retained the same rankings as 2016.
Little Rock-based Lost Forty Brewery, working under a microbrewery restaurant approval, held first place for beer production for the second year in a row, 12,075 barrels Beer, almost one-third of the state's total beer production in 2017. Lost Forty production was nearly 30 percent over last year. Core Brewing Co. in Springdale held its second place with 4,409 barrels, up 4 percent from 2016. Rogers Ozark Beer Co. maintained third place at 3,918 barrels, up 29 percent from 2016. Both Core and Ozark Beer reports on their production among microbreweries.
North Little Rock's Flyway Brewing Co. ranked fourth and produced 3,847 barrels of beer in 2017, 318 percent of 920 barrels in 2016. Diamond Bear Brewing Co. of North Little Rock was rated 2667 barrels in 2017, 22 percent down from 3,438 barrels in 2016.
Together, the state's top five breweries made 26,916 barrels of beer or 69 percent of state production.
Lost Forty Owners John Beachboard said the brewery will continue to increase production in 2018, but not at the level of recent years. He forecasts an increase of 10 to 20 percent for 2018, with the brewery focusing on adding new beers to the company's offering.
He added that the brewery plans to maintain its strategy of selling its beer only in Arkansas. He said that limiting the distribution to the state contributes to ensuring quality and freshness, two aspects he attributed to the continued success of Lost Forty.
The Brewers Association, a trade group that supports craft breweries, ranked 38th per capita in 2017 in the number of craft breweries. US Craft breweries produced 25.4 million barrels of beer in 2017, compared to 24.5 million in 2016. In 2017 there were 6,266 craft breweries in operation, which according to the association employed just over 135,000 workers.
In 2017 The total value of Craft Beers sold in the US was $ 26 billion, according to the Brewers Association. This represents growth of 8 percent over 2016. For 2017, total beer sales decreased by 1 percent, but craft beer rose 5 percent, representing 12.7 percent of all beer production.
Julia Herz, Craft Beer Program Director With the Brewers Association, newer craft breweries are responsible for most of the recent production growth nationwide. She noted that production in breweries established between 2014 and 2017 represented 52.6 percent of production gains in 2017.
She said production figures in Arkansas showed that breweries have plenty of room to grow [in early 2018] Lost added 40 brewing capacity to produce more beer and in May, the company won two bronze medals at the World Beer Cup competition in Nashville, Tennessee. In April, Fayilleville told Faye Cove Fayette Cove, it's leasing room just around the corner from its taproom and brewery, and plans to use the new location to produce more beer.
In 2017, Fossil Cove produced 1,384 barrels of beer, down slightly from 1,403 in 2016.
Last month, Core signed a distribution agreement with Dallas-based Glazer & Beer and Beverage. Prior to the deal, Core distributed his own beer in Arkansas and parts of Oklahoma and southwest Missouri. In addition to selling canned and barreled beer, Core operates nine public core stores throughout the state.
By John Sykes Jr.
Lost Forty production manager Dylan Yelenich observes beer cans that run off the assembly line in the Little Rock Brewery …
SundayMonday Business on 08/26/2018