IL craft breweries rebound
Illinois' largest craft breweries rebounded in 2021, just a year after the pandemic walloped the industry.
The state of beer: Revolution Brewing, the state's top craft brewery, saw a 10% increase from 2020 sales last year, according to an exclusive Axios analysis of data from the Brewers Association.
- Half Acre Beer also saw a 10% increase.
- Maplewood Brewing boasted the highest increase, at 19%.
- West suburban Two Brothers Brewing decreased 1.5%.
The big picture: The craft beer industry grew by 1% in 2021. In Illinois, 17 breweries opened; seven closed.
- Revolution placed 38th among the nation's largest 50.
- Wisconsin's New Glarus Brewing placed 12th.
- Indiana's 3 Floyds Brewing placed 26th.
Between the lines: The annual data — published in the New Brewer journal — is the most comprehensive breakdown of Illinois' craft beer industry.
Yes, but: Not all craft brewers are represented in the rankings, because some don't submit data to the industry's trade group, the Brewers Association.
- Our analysis looked at sales from breweries, brewpubs and taprooms, but excluded contract brewers and non-independent breweries.
What's next: The association's Bart Watson, who compiled the data, says 2022 is producing mixed results. Industry growth is projected near 5%, though inflation on the cost of raw goods, particularly grain, has been a challenge.
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