The Brewers Association (BA) concluded the 30th edition of the Craft Brewers Conference (CBC) & BrewExpo America® on March 29, 2013. As the largest industry gathering, CBC brought together some 6,400 brewing professionals and approximately 440 exhibitors in the nation’s capital for conversation and collaboration about America’s craft beer culture. Highlights included:
New Belgium Brewing co-founder and CEO Kim Jordan welcomed attendees as this year’s keynote speaker. Jordan presented the keynote at CBC in New Orleans in 2003, where she famously called for craft brewers to aspire to reach 10 percent of all U.S. beer sales. A decade later, Jordan returned to discuss issues ranging from technical brewing considerations to the industry’s collective spirit and future.
A group of 233 small and independent American brewery owners and brewers, representing 215 craft breweries and 46 states, climbed the steps of the United States Capitol. They met with Congressional staff to tell their stories and discuss legislative issues of concern to the craft brewing industry, including advocacy for a tax cut called the Small BREW act (Small Brewer Reinvestment and Expanding Workforce).
The Honorable Peter DeFazio (D-OR) was presented the “Brewers Association Achievement Award” in appreciation of his five years of leadership in the House Small Brewers Caucus. DeFazio was recognized for his “evergreen commitment to supporting America’s small and independent brewers and for his personal passion and enthusiasm for craft beer and homebrewing.”
The Brewers Association also officially unveiled three new manuals for craft brewers to address sustainability issues: BA Water and Wastewater: Treatment/Volume Reduction Manual; BA Solid Waste Reduction Manual; and BA Energy Usage, GHG Reduction, Efficiency and Load Management Manual. Each contains multiple levels of solutions for different size breweries and a toolbox including guidance, checklists and Excel-based tools.
Three members of the brewing community were recognized and awarded for their dedication and service:
Russell Schehrer Award for Innovation in Brewing: Peter Bouckaert of New Belgium Brewing Co. was honored with the Russell Schehrer Award for implementing the biggest barrel ageing operation in the country. Brewmaster for the past 10 years, Bouckaert makes all kinds of experimental beers, many of which are released under New Belgium’s “Lips of Faith” series.
Brewers Association Recognition Award: Art Larrance of Cascade Brewing/Raccoon Lodge & Brewpub received the Brewers Association Recognition Award for his innovative and award-winning beers. Larrance has been in the industry since the early 1980s and opened Cascade Brewing in 1998.
F.X. Matt Defense of the Industry Award: David Katleski, president of the New York State Craft Brewers Guild and owner of the Empire Brewing Co., received the F.X. Matt Award for his tireless efforts to make regulatory reform possible and change legislation. Katleski operates a small brewpub in Syracuse and is constantly working to help the local craft market. This past year, he had five major pieces of reform legislation passed in New York.
All Photos © 2013 Jason E. Kaplan