Craft Beer in the Capital: 13,300 Brewing Professionals, Exhibitors Convene in D.C. for 2017 CBC

13 April 2017

imageFrom the Brewers Association:

Boulder, CO • April 13, 2017—The Brewers Association (BA)the not-for-profit trade group representing America’s small and independent craft brewershas concluded the 34th edition of the Craft Brewers Conference & BrewExpo America (CBC) in Washington, D.C.

As the largest industry gathering, CBC brought together some 13,300 brewing professionals and more than 900 exhibitors for discussion and dialogue around America’s craft brewing business and culture. CBC was last in the nation’s capital in 2013, with 6,400 attendees and 440 exhibiting companies.

Highlights from the 2017 conference include:

2017 Achievement Awards

Three members of the brewing community were recognized and awarded for their dedication and service.

· Brewers Association Recognition Award: Vinnie & Natalie Cilurzo, Co-Owners, Russian River Brewing Company

· Russell Schehrer Award for Innovation in Brewing: Will Meyers, Brewmaster, Cambridge Brewing Company

· F.X. Matt Defense of the Industry Award: Matthew McLaughlin, Executive Director, Mississippi Brewers Guild

Other notable takeaways from this year’s CBC include:

· Keynotes: Leadership expert Alison Levine drew parallels from her experience climbing the highest peak on every continent to discuss how craft brewers can compete in a challenging and changing environment. Revered brewer Dick Cantwell provided his industry colleagues with his insights from his long career in the craft brewing community, offering a message of unity among small and independent brewers and reinforcing the importance of producing and maintaining high quality beer.

· Diversity Committee: The BA announced the formation of a Diversity Committee, with a goal of bringing a more diverse group of brewers and beer lovers into the craft brewing community. Helmed by BA Board member Scott Metzger (Free Tail Brewing Company), the committee is made up of a cross section of industry members of varied backgrounds and regions.

· Marketing and Advertising Code: The BA updated its Marketing and Advertising Code to help brewers maintain high standards and act as responsible corporate citizens. New language has been included to address that beer advertising and marketing materials should not use sexually explicit, lewd, or demeaning brand names, language, text, graphics, photos, video, or other images that reasonable adult consumers would find inappropriate for consumer products offered to the public. Any name that does not meet the Marketing and Advertising Code that wins a BA produced competition including the Great American Beer Festival® (GABF) or World Beer CupSM will not be read on stage or promoted in BA materials, and will not be permitted to use the GABF or World Beer Cup intellectual properties in their marketing.

Additionally, the BA has convened an Advertising Complaint Review Board should an issue arise that warrants further review and action.

· CBC Symposium Beer: Each year the BA works closely with the local state guild to create the CBC Symposium Beer. Washington, D.C., presented an exciting opportunity to collaborate with the D.C., Virginia and Maryland guilds and involve area craft breweries. CBC attendees received a can of Family Tree, a Belgian pale ale whose recipe highlights the comradery among five D.C.-area brewers—Manor Hill Brewing, Vanish Farmwoods Brewery, Waredaca Brewing Company and DC Brau Brewing Company—who got their start at Flying Dog Brewery.

· Government Affairs: More than 230 brewers, brewery owners and state guild representatives participated in the CBC Hill Climb, talking with Congressional staff about legislation important to the brewing community including the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act. Introduced at the beginning of the 115th Congress, this legislation would lower the federal excise tax paid by craft brewers. Brewers explained that a recalibration of the tax rate would allow them to reinvest in their companies, creating the opportunity for more local manufacturing jobs.

The 2018 CBC will be held in Nashville, Tennessee from April 30 – May 3, in conjunction with the 2018 World Beer Cup, the most prestigious beer competition in the world. The BA will be back in D.C. this June 2 and 3, 2017 for SAVORSM, the premier craft beer and food pairing event in the country, featuring 86 small and independent craft brewers from all over the U.S.

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