The meteoric rise of Michigan’s craft brewing industry has spawned the creation of hundreds of new companies in communities all over the state.
Michigan craft breweries have only just started to sell their beer in international markets, but many in the industry believe exporting could soon become an important diversification strategy.
When Deschutes Brewery founder Gary Fish launched a two-year search to locate the Oregon company’s first satellite production facility, one of his top criteria was determining whether the state and local community wanted his business.
While President and CEO Margie Briganti’s abrupt departure after 14 months at Battle Creek Creek Unlimited left a hole in the leadership of the economic development firm, it also comes on the heels of what’s been a tumultuous two years for the organization.
Pioneers of the craft brewing industry face a steep challenge from the growing market they helped establish.
The craft beer industry in Michigan essentially started with Larry Bell in 1985 launching what would become Bell’s Brewery Inc. Since then, and especially over the last decade, the industry has taken off in West Michigan and beyond.