Boston Beer tops craft brewer rankings

Who was America’s biggest craft brewer in 2011?

No surprise, according to the latest rankings from the Brewers Association of Boulder, CO. The answer: Boston Beer Co.

The Brewers Association. a not-for-profit trade group for U.S. breweries, today released its annual lists of the top 50 craft and overall brewing companies in the U.S., based on 2011 beer sales volume. Of the top 50 overall brewing companies, 36 are small and independent¹ craft brewing companies.

Long Island’s Blue Point Brewery ranked No. 34 among craft brewers and No. 46 overall.

The association, however, listed no statistical data with its rankings, but did say that the ranking was based on beer sales volume.

Boston Beer, brewers of Samuel Adams, was followed in order by Sierra NevadaNew Belgium, The Grambrinus Co., of Texas, and Deschutes Brewery, of Oregon.

“In the last 15 years, craft brewing has gone from one percent of the overall beer market to almost six percent in 2011,” Paul Gatza, director of the Brewers Association, said in a press release. “We attribute a large part of that growth to the many talented brewers who are providing beer lovers with more beer style and flavor choices than ever before.”

The Brewers Association defines an American craft brewer as small, with production of less than 6 million barrels; independent (less than 25 percent owned by another producer of alcoholic beverages), and traditional, with either an all malt flagship or has at least 50 percent of its volume in either all malt beers or in beers which use adjuncts to enhance rather than lighten flavor.

Boston Beer also ranked as America’s No. 5 overall brewery–behind  Anheuser-Busch, MillerCoors, Pabst and Yuengling.

Top 50 Craft Brewing Companies
(Based on 2011 beer sales volume)

1.  Boston Beer Co. (Samuel Adams)

2.   Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

3. New Belgium Brewing Co.

4. The Gambrinus Company (Shiner, Bridgeport, Trumer Pils)

5.   Deschutes Brewery

6.  Matt Brewing Co. (Saranac)

7. Bell’s Brewery, Inc.

8. Harpoon Brewery

9. Lagunitas Brewing Co.

10. Boulevard Brewing Co.

11. Stone Brewing Company

12. Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

13. Brooklyn Brewery

14. Alaskan Brewing & Bottling Co.

15. Long Trail Brewing Co.

16. Shipyard Brewing Co.

17. Abita Brewing Co.

18. Great Lakes Brewing Co.

19. New Glarus Brewing Co.

20. Full Sail Brewing Co.

21. Summit Brewing Co.

22. Anchor Brewing Co.

23. Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

24.  Sweetwater Brewing Co.

25. Rogue Ales Brewery

26. Flying Dog Brewery

27.  Victory Brewing Co.

28. CraftWorks Breweries & Restaurants

29. Oskar Blues Brewery

30. Odell Brewing Co.

31. Stevens Point Brewery Co.

32. Ninkasi Brewing Co.

33. BJ’s Chicago Pizza & Brewery, Inc.

34. Blue Point Brewing Co.

35. Bear Republic Brewing Co.

36.  Lost Coast Brewery Cafe

37. Big Sky Brewing Co.

38. North Coast Brewing Co. Inc.

39. Saint Louis Brewery, Inc./Schlafly Bottleworks

40. Gordon Biersch Brewing Co.

41 Breckenridge Brewery

42 Founders Brewing Co.

43 Saint Arnold Brewing Co.

44 Karl Strauss Brewing Co.

45. Real Ale Brewing Co.

46. Mac and Jack’s Brewery Inc.

47. Smuttynose Brewing Co.

48. Utah Brewers Cooperative (Wasatch, Squatters_

49. Left Hand Brewing Co.

50.  Anderson Valley Brewing Co. (tie)

Four Peaks Brewing Co. (tie)


Top 50 Overall Brewing Companies 

1 Anheuser-Busch Inc. (Includes Bass, Beck’s, Busch, Goose Is, Landshark, Michelob, Rolling Rock, Shock Top, Wild Blue)

2 MillerCoors ( includes A.C. Golden, Batch 19, Blue Moon, Colorado Native, Herman Joseph, Keystone, Killian’s and Leinenkugel’s)

3. Pabst Brewing Co.  (Schlitz and 28 other brand families)

4. D. G. Yuengling and Son Inc.

5. Boston Beer Co.

6.North American Breweries (Dundee, Genesee, Labatt Lime, Magic Hat and Pyramid)

7. Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

8. New Belgium Brewing Co.

9. Craft Brewers Alliance, Inc. (Kona, Red Hook and Widmer Brothers)

10. The Gambrinus Company (BridgePort, Shiner and Trumer)

11. Deschutes Brewery

12. Matt Brewing Co. (Includes Saranac, Flying Bison)

13. Bell’s Brewery, Inc.

14.Minhas Craft Brewery (Huber,  Mountain Crest and 9 other brand)

15. Harpoon Brewery

16. Lagunitas Brewing Co.

17. Boulevard Brewing Co.

18. Stone Brewing Co.

19. Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

20. Brooklyn Brewery

21. Alaskan Brewing and Bottling Co.

22. Long Trail Brewing Co.

23. August Schell Brewing Co. (includes Grain Belt)

24. Shipyard Brewing Co.

25. Abita Brewing Co.

26. World Brews/Winery Exchange (private labels)

27. Great Lakes Brewing Co.

28. New Glarus Brewing Co.

29. Full Sail Brewing Co.

30. Pittsburgh Brewing Co.

31. Summit Brewing Co.

32. Anchor Brewing Co.

33. Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

34. Cold Spring Brewing Co. (Gluek and 17 other brand families)

35. Sweetwater Brewing Co.

36. Rogue Ales Brewery

37. Mendocino Brewing Co. (includes Butte Creek, Kingfisher and Olde Saratoga)

38. Flying Dog Brewery

39.Victory Brewing Co.

40. CraftWorks Breweries & Restaurants (A1A, Big River, Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurants, Rock Bottom Restaurants, Ragtime and Seven Bridges brewpubs)

41. Oskar Blues Brewery & Tasty Weasel Tap Room

42. Odell Brewing Co.

43. Stevens Point Brewery Co. (includes James Page and Whole Hog brands)

44. Ninkasi Brewing Co.

45. BJ’s Chicago Pizza & Brewery

46. Blue Point Brewing Co.

47. Bear Republic Brewing Co.

48. Goose Island Brewing Co. (sold in 2011 in Anheuser-Busch)

49. Lost Coast Brewery and Cafe

50. Narragansett Brewing Co.

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