The Beginning of a Beautiful Friendship

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How many times have you encountered someone, likely a friend or family member, who had no idea what it entails to run or work at brewery? Making beer for a living sounds fun (and it is!) but there is a lot more to it than just making beer. Small and independent breweries are manufacturers and restaurants employing 150,000 people in the United States and directly impacting related industries such as agriculture, retail, service, and other sectors.

Breweries are small businesses, and with a net of two new breweries opening every day, our numbers are growing. Brewing is a serious business and we should educate people about our industry and its economic and societal contributions, especially our state and federal elected officials. If the people close to you don’t know what it’s like to run or work at a brewery, it is likely that many of your legislators don’t either. Let’s change that!

(LEARN: Economic Impact)

Send an Invitation

August is fast approaching which means that your elected officials will be returning to their districts and home states for the Congressional recess. Take this opportunity to reach out to them and invite them to visit your brewery. Legislators will benefit from learning about how the current legislation and regulations impact you on a day-to-day basis.

It’s a great opportunity to share that:

  • Independent craft breweries are impacted when the government shuts down because the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) is not able to issue brewers notices or approve labels and formulas
  • The federal excise tax recalibration (FET) that reduced excise taxes for independent brewers is set to expire at the end of 2019 unless congress extends the recalibration or passes the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act of 2019 (HR 1175/S.362)
  • Independent breweries face different franchise laws and rules about how they can get their beers to market dependent on what state they are located in
  • Independent breweries contribute more than $70 million a year to charities in their communities

Our industry has seen a significant amount of growth over the past 10 years, not just in the number of breweries opening, but also in our legislative and grassroots efforts. Inviting your elected officials (and candidates for local office) to visit your brewery is an excellent way to start or continue to build a relationship with the people who have a say in the issues that impact your business.

(READ: U.S. Legislators Show Their Love for Independent Brewers)

Start Building a Relationship

Everyone from Presidential candidates down to the local mayor is interested in stopping by a brewery on the campaign trail! If you want to invite your federal legislators to visit your brewery we recommend reaching out to their district office – you can find that information on the House and Senate websites.

The Brewers Association is also happy to help. Katie Marisic, the federal affairs manager, can connect you with your Representative or Senator’s office, as well as provide you with state specific information for your visit. Start building a dialogue with elected officials now, and it will have positive impacts for years to come. Who knows, it could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship.