The New Ag Kids: Starting a Farm Brewery in the Farmhouse Brewing Era

Craft Brewers Conference 2019
Location: Denver, Colorado
Speakers: Amber Watts, Christian DeBenedetti, Davy Pasternak, Evan Watson

In this panel, owners of rural breweries will share their experiences in opening and operating production breweries and tasting rooms on agricultural land. Farmers have been brewers since, likely, there were farms, but modern brewing has largely been an industrial process. In the past decade, however, the global beer market has seen an increasing growth in farmhouse breweries—some, but not all, of which are located on agricultural land. Opening a brewery on farmland presents unique challenges, including zoning issues, water rights and wastewater treatment, state and municipal laws about agricultural processing, and community opposition. Navigating these issues may impede or prevent breweries from opening, or even potentially shut down critical operations of already successful rural breweries. Our panelists will engage in frank, open discussion of the unique tribulations that come from starting agricultural breweries in different regions of the United States.

Learning Objectives:

Understand the unique issues faced by farm brewery owners; Discuss regional differences in rural and agricultural business ownership; Learn how to navigate zoning and community issues during brewery startup

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