Breweries are facing increasing competition, pressure, oversight and scrutiny by regulators, suppliers, distributors, and retail accounts. The rapidly evolving beer industry, partnered with a maturing pallet among the beer consumer base, has brought an acute awareness of the need for industry education.
The annual and upcoming Craft Brewers Conference & BrewExpo America® (CBC) is an immense opportunity to learn and network with thousands of industry professionals, and is the largest beer industry conference in the world.
Scaled down to a smaller size, some state guilds are hosting educational gatherings as well. Often offering keynote speakers, panels or workshops led by allied professionals working in the craft beer business, trade expos, receptions, and hospitalities, state brewer guilds are bringing about local learning opportunities for industry knowledge advancement.
Similar to the CBC, guild technical conferences strive to:
- Provide a forum for marketing, sales, and technical issues affecting the craft beer industry
- Disseminate best practices in the brewery business
- Highlight the importance of experience, mentorship, and further education
- Fundraise for the guild
- Engage and recruit new and renewing members
- Offer a platform for breweries to connect with service and ingredient suppliers crucial to operating a brewery business
Interesting and informative perspectives pollinate across the state’s expanding independent brewing community, bringing about positive evolution to our great industry.
Offering informal receptions, social hours, and/or beer and food pairing dinners, complete with the celebration of member beers, creates a casual space for sharing learnings. Ideas, theories and experiences relating to the seminars are often expanded, further broadening the perspectives of attendees.
Upcoming conferences include:
New Mexico Craft Brewers Guild | March 31 | Albuquerque
Maine Brewers Guild | March 31 | Portland
Idaho Brewers United Summit | April 25 | Boise
California Craft Brewers Association hosts three: Spring | May 21-23 (San Diego) | Summit Sept 7-9 (Sacramento) | and Fall | Nov 5-7 (Sonoma)
Illinois Craft Brewers Guild | June 26- 27 | Chicago
Arizona Craft Brewers Guild | July 27 | Phoenix
Minnesota Brewers Guild | July 28 | Duluth
Florida Brewers Guild | August 9-10 | Orlando
Brewers of Pennsylvania | September 8-9 | State College
Mississippi Brewers Guild | September 21-22 | TBA
Montana Brewers Association | September 28-29 | Missoula
Iowa Brewers Guild | November 3-4 | Northwoods
North Carolina Craft Brewers Guild | November 7-9 | Winston-Salem
New Hampshire Craft Brewers Guild | November 10-11 | Durham, NH
Oregon Brewers Guild | November 29 | Portland
Conferences held annually that have already passed include:
Nebraska Brewers Guild | January 5-6 | Lincoln
Michigan Brewers Guild | January 11-13 | Kalamazoo
Ohio Craft Brewers Association | February 7 | February
Colorado Brewers Guild | February | Colorado Springs
Texas Craft Brewers Guild | February 11-12 | Austin
Successful guild technical conferences are an important benefit to the guild’s membership, and a considerable value to the state’s entire craft community. As the organizer for the Craft Brewers Conference, the Brewers Association finds great significance in offering opportunities for our industry to network, collaborate, learn, and progress. If you are hosting a guild technical conference in the upcoming year, please do let me know so we can help promote it!