Sep 30, 2022 - Food and Drink

Craft beer production rising in Texas after dip in 2020

Credit: Data: Brewers Association; Table: Thomas Oide/Axios

Texas craft breweries rebounded in 2021, a promising sign after the pandemic staggered the industry.

The state of beer: Of the state's 10 largest breweries, seven increased production in 2021 compared with 2020, according to an Axios analysis of data from the Brewers Association.

Just one Texas brewery — Spoetzl Brewery — saw a year-over-year decline in production, but the Shiner-based brewery continues to see the highest sales in the state, with more than 500,000 barrels sold last year.

  • The state also saw 12 breweries close and 45 open, the data shows.

The big picture: The craft beer industry grew by 8% in 2021, while the overall market moved up 1%. Texas placed two breweries — Saint Arnold and the brewer of Shiner — among the nation's 50 largest.

  • Yes, but: The rebound could be hampered by supply chain problems and a carbon dioxide shortage caused by contamination at an extinct volcano in Mississippi.

Zoom in: Sales at Dallas' Community Brewing Co. and Fort Worth's Martin House Brewing Company were among the top five craft brewers in the state.

Zoom out: Pinthouse Brewing in Austin was the state's fastest-growing craft brewery, with a 92% increase in sales.

Between the lines: The annual data — published for its members in the New Brewer journal — is the most comprehensive breakdown of the state's craft beer industry.

Of note: Not all Texas craft brewers are represented in the rankings, because some do not submit sales and production data to the Colorado-based Brewers Association, the industry trade group.

  • Our analysis looked at sales from breweries, brewpubs and taprooms, but excluded contract brewers.
  • Also excluded are local breweries who don't meet the definition of independent.

What's next: Bart Watson, the association's chief economist who compiled the data, told Axios' John Frank that 2022 is producing mixed results and projected growth is near 4-5%.


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