Beer Serves America, a biennial report prepared for The Beer Institute and the National Beer Wholesalers Association, outlines the economic impact of the beer industry. The brewing industry is an integral part of the national economy, contributing billions of dollars in wages and taxes and creating millions of jobs. Fintech is proud to support our nation’s brewers, beer importers, and independent beer distributors as they work tirelessly to keep the beer flowing across the country.
Let’s dive into the report to see just how beer fits into the economic patchwork of America.
*Methodology for this report comes from John Dunham & Associates, an economic research firm.
The beer industry creates nearly 2.4 million jobs for Americans. This includes approximately:
- 52K agricultural jobs
- 78K manufacturing jobs
- 92K brewer and beer importer jobs
- 137K distribution jobs
- 980K retailer jobs
“Every state, congressional district, and state legislative district has jobs that depend on our nation’s beer industry. America’s beer industry contributes about 1.6% of our nation’s gross domestic product,” the report says.
America’s beer industry brings a total economic contribution of $409.2B with $63.8B in total taxes paid.
The report indicated the following states as the top contributors:
- California: 272,909 total jobs | $17.6B total wages | $50.6B total economic impact
- Texas: 204,087 total jobs | $11.3B total wages | $34B total economic impact
- Florida: 195,177 total jobs | $9B total wages | $26.2B total economic impact
The Beer Life Cycle and its Economic Impacts
The report defined beer as coming in through two ways. The first is through agricultural products like barley, corn, rice, and hops that are purchased from farmers and other agricultural suppliers. The second involves importing beer as a finished product. This is further broken down into four categories of “brewers.”
- Major brewers – those producing more than two million barrels of malt beverages per year (i.e. Anheuser-Busch, Molson Coors Beverage Company, Yuengling)
- International brewers – while not based in the US, these brewers have significant domestic sales and service operations (i.e. Heineken, Constellation Brands Beer Division)
- Regional brewers – brewers that produce less than two million barrels of malt beverages per year but still have national distribution
- Brewpubs and small micro-brewers – these firms produce for a limited market
All things considered, there are approximately 92,150 people employed in “brewing or importing operations, sales, packaging, and direct distribution.” This is a 36.4% increase from the study conducted in 2020.
After the beer has been produced or imported, it then moves into the second tier of the industry – wholesaling. Wholesalers, otherwise referred to as distributors, handle the transportation of malt beverages from the brewers or a warehouse operated by the importers, sales of these products to retailers, and the storage of products for a brief period of time.
The report’s data indicates that overall employment in beer distribution is up 11.3% since 2020, with over 137,000 people in beer distribution. This rise is attributed to the development of new malt beverage offerings, growth in imports, and an increase in regional and national distribution among smaller producers.
All that beer has to end up somewhere, right? The third tier of the industry handles selling the product directly to the consumer. There are both on-premises (restaurants, bars) and off-premises (convenience stores, grocery stores) organizations. Regulations vary per state regarding the sale of malt beverages. For this study, the retail tier comprises:
- Restaurants, bars, and taverns
- Retail stores
- Amusement venues
- State stores authorized to sell beer
Under these parameters, the study identified approximately 980,000 people employed by outlets selling malt beverages.
Other Related Industries
The study names another group as “Suppliers,” which they define as firms that produce and sell all kinds of items related to the brewing industry. These include ingredients for the production process, packaging materials, fuel, machinery, and more There are also multiple relative services related to suppliers like advertising, transportation, personnel, and financial services that bring in even more jobs. After everything, approximately 522,240 jobs are directly linked to suppliers in the malt beverage industry. This auxiliary side of the business generates roughly $124B in economic activity.
Brewing Up Something for the Economy
With the beer industry on the incline after the pandemic and related shutdowns, more jobs are being created and more money is circulating through the economy. Whether it is a major brewer or micro brewpub, Fintech’s solutions help with alcohol invoice payment and data management. Fintech’s PaymentSource® works across all three tiers of the industry and allows businesses to increase their economic output by creating efficiencies and identifying margin-building opportunities.