The fourth annual convening of the Indiana Craft Brewers Conference (INCBC), held in Indianapolis on March 11-13th, attracted over 150 brewery and affiliate members to attend. The conference, presented by the Brewers of Indiana Guild, filled two days with 15 educational sessions focused on technical brewing, business operations, and regulatory affairs, as well as a trade show with nearly 30 vendors. Triton Brewing Company and Scarlet Lane Brewing hosted social gatherings for attendees. Nearly 100 breweries were represented at the INCBC.
Brewers Association (BA) representatives – Federal Affairs Manager, Katie Marisic, and Sustainability Ambassador, Ian Hughes delivered the keynotes. Katie’s keynote kicked off the conference with a “Beer and Politics” overview and federal affairs update. Topics of focus included the 2-year provision of the federal excise tax reduction, the success and growing use of the BA Independent Seal, as a well as the importance of grassroots participation in state and federal politics.
Ian’s presentation, his first in his new role as BA Sustainability Ambassador, wrapped up the conference. With a focus on brewery sustainability, Ian highlighted the free suite of resources available to Brewers Association members, including the BA Benchmarking Project and BA Sustainability Manuals. These powerful tools are openly available to help break down the barriers to starting, growing and/or sharing brewery sustainability initiatives. Ian also noted that the BA Sustainability Mentor (John Stier), Sustainability Ambassador, and Sustainability Subcommittee are the driving force behind these resources and they are available to assist BA Membership with these tools. Two Indiana breweries, Sun King Brewery and Ironwood Brewing, signed on to the BA Benchmarking Project after the presentation. Ongoing discussions with several other Indiana breweries will hopefully result in participation growing.