There are now 23 microbreweries in the USA and 10 in Canada. In the past 5 years many have changed from ale to lager brewing to take advantage of the consumer trend towards lager. Many microbrewers are young urban professionals and include among them a number of doctors, bankers, lawyers and geologists with some experience as home brewers. Their chances of surviving and making profits are helped by a number of factors. Production capacity is low, ranging from 1500 bbl/year for brew- pubs to 15,000 bbl/year for microbreweries. Packaging and distribution is limited and marketing policies achieve a strong local identity. Speciality products include old American beers like Temperance Beer, California Steam Beer, Pennsylvania Swankeg, Kentucky Common Beer, American Stout, Wisconsin Creamer, Old Kentucky Sparkling Ale and European ales, wheat beers, 'alt' beers and special lagers. The Chesapeake Bay Brewing Co. is used as an example of a successful microbrewery. Details of plant design, modifications to existing equipment, production schedule and marketing policies are given. Microbreweries and brew-pubs can expect to achieve, at best, about 4% of the US beer consumption. They are not competitors of the large breweries but will serve to revitalize and stimulate the existing market.
Keywords : brewing development microbrewing pub brewery