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Craft brewing boosts California economy

California’s craft brewing industry generated approximately $3 billion in total economic impact to the state in 2011, reported Steve Wagner, president of the California Craft Brewing Association (CCBA), Nevada City, Calif., and president and brewmaster at Stone Brewing Co., Escondido, Calif. California’s craft brewers also created more than 22,000 jobs last year in a state that still is facing double-digit unemployment, he said, citing a 2012 study sponsored by the CCBA in conjunction with the UC Berkeley Goldman School of Public Policy.

“The California craft brewing industry is an integral part of the state’s economy, making up more than 1.5 percent of total economic output,” Wagner said in a statement. “California’s craft brewers have prospered through difficult economic times, but the industry remains dependent on the support of the state’s leadership to ensure these small and independently owned businesses have the freedom necessary to expand while adding jobs and supporting their communities.”

CCBA Executive Director Tom McCormick supported Wagner’s remarks, adding: “As the craft brewing industry continues to grow — adding more jobs and generating more tax revenue — so will its positive impact to California and the local communities that are home to our craft brewers. California’s craft brewers generated approximately $400 million in local, state and federal tax revenue in 2011 while the industry grew by 13 percent in production and 15 percent in dollars compared to 2010.”

The referenced study, titled “California Craft Brewing Industry: An Economic Impact Study,” quantified the total economic impact by dollar value of the California craft brewing industry for 2011. The study also estimated the number of jobs created, community contributions, and the taxes paid locally, statewide and federally by the California craft brewing industry. California leads the nation’s craft brewing industry, producing more craft beer each year than any other state, according to the CCBA.

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