Washington State Creates Commission To Promote Microbrews

  • November 16, 2006
When it comes to alcoholic beverages, state government generally keeps its distance except where it's regulating sales. The state of Washington, however, has just appointed members to what may be the first-ever commission to market microbrews.

The group represents breweries that produce fewer than 100,000 barrels annually per location. With 84 microbreweries, Washington trails just California and Colorado.

Beer is big business in the Pacific Northwest. For the first six months of 2006, microbreweries saw increased sales of 11 percent nationally, according to the Brewers Association, based in Boulder, Colo.

The Washington commission will collect a 10-cent per-barrel assessment on a maximum of 10,000 barrels per brewer, as well as revenue from commission-sponsored festivals, to pay for promotional activities.

Members are hoping to replicate the success of the Washington Wine Commission, which promotes Washington wines domestically and internationally. Washington is the nation's second-leading producer of premium wine, behind California.



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