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A new economic impact study has found that the U.S. beer industry, comprising brewers, beer importers, beer distributors, brewer suppliers and retailers, directly and indirectly contributes $246.6 billion annually to the American economy. The industry encompasses 2,851 brewing establishments, 3,728 distributors and 576,353 retailers.
Jointly commissioned by the Beer Institute (BI) and the National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA), the study, Beer Serves America, discovered that the industry generates more than 2 million American jobs, accounting for almost $79 billion in wages and benefits and more than $246.6 billion in economic activity. The beer industry additionally contributed $49.1 billion dollars in the form of business, personal and consumption taxes in 2012.
Further, according to the study, the beer industry directly employs almost 1.1 million people, paying nearly $31.8 billion in wages and benefits among brewers, distributors and retailers such as supermarkets, convenience stores, restaurants, bars and stadiums. Indirectly, the industry generates almost $153.2 billion in economic activity in agriculture, manufacturing, construction, transportation and other sectors.
“In addition to providing quality jobs with solid wages, the independent, three-tier beer distribution system provides transparency and accountability and works to ensure alcoholic beverages are sold only to licensed retailers who in turn are responsible for selling only to adults of legal drinking age,” noted Craig Purser, president of NBWA. “This time-tested system, in which America’s beer distributors play a critical role, ensures that brewers of all sizes can reach a wide network of retailers and American consumers can enjoy tremendous choice and variety -- 13,000 different labels of beer --at a great value.”
“These numbers demonstrate that our industry continues to create quality jobs, build our economy and generate important domestic revenue in an economy that needs every job we can support,” observed Joe McClain, president of the Beer Institute. “For this reason, it is important that state and federal officials consider equitable tax policies and avoid harming an industry that is so effectively aiding economic growth.”
Conducted by New York-based John Dunham & Associates, the study covers data compiled in 2012. The complete study, including state-by-state and congressional district breakdowns of economic contributions, is available online.