Last week’s CA Craft Beer Summit in Sacramento, put on by Calif Craft Brewers Assn, amply demonstrated continued health and vibrancy of movement. Tho many now focusing on clouds, “there’s still lots of sunshine,” said exec director Tom McCormick. “The industry has grown so much,” he added, noting it’s still “growing.” And even tho there are “headwinds” and “storm clouds,” with many craft brewers “not growing as fast as they were,” there’s “a lot of enthusiasm” and “plenty of room to grow” further. There were 2000 attendees at summit. Sizable trade show sprawled over 65,000 sq ft. It was bustling with activity, brimming with enthusiasm. Featured speakers included craft luminaries like BA chair Charlie Papazian, Sierra founder Ken Grossman and Firestone Walker co-founder David Walker. That’s for starters. Consumer event the day after featured 6,000 folks. All this showcased right in seat of state govt. It hadda make an impression on state legislators and their staff. Many attended. CA Secy of State Alex Padilla addressed CCBA knowledgeably, very familiar with what’s happening in CA craft. CCBA, more so than any other state craft guild, has become a force. California has 850 craft brewers. Over 500 are CCBA members. CA still adding about 2 craft brewers a week. Mostly these are tiny taprooms, and many are still growing rapidly. Calif in-state craft brewers grew 260,000 bbls, 10.9% in 2016 to 2.7 mil bbls sold in Calif alone. That’s 11-12 share of Calif state shipments. And also about 11% of nationwide craft shipments.
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