Craft beer brings $2 billion to PA economy

exterior2_cropPennsylvania’s growing craft beer industry is now the fourth largest in the country, bringing in $2 billion for the state’s economy in 2012, according to a national trade group.

The Boulder, Colorado-based Brewers Association recently put out a report on craft brewing in the U.S., and found California, Texas, New York, Pennsylvania, and Colorado have the largest craft brewing economies in the country. 2013 numbers likely won’t be available until the end of 2014.

In Pennsylvania, there were 20,867 people employed in craft beer in 2012, at 102 breweries.

Craft breweries are defined by breweries producing less than 6 million barrels per year., the largest of which in Pennsylvania Victory Brewing Co., based in Downingtown. But breweries can get as small as a brew pub, often only producing beer for a single restaurant.

Last year, a bill was floated by a bipartisan coalition of lawmakers, including Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA), which would have lowered the excise tax on small beer makers, a proposition supported by local brewer Tom Kehoe, who owns Yards Brewing Company.

@RandyLoBasso on Twitter

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