The Brewers Association’s 2018 Craft Brewers Conference (CBC) & BrewExpo America will descend upon Music City USA for four days of education and networking. The 35th edition of the annual conference will take place April 30-May 3 at the Music City Center in Nashville, Tenn.

More than 13,000 brewing industry professionals will have the opportunity to meet with 700 exhibitors and hear from a wide range of speakers during 70 seminars across 12 different educational tracks. Featured speakers include industry keynote address speaker Deb Carey, founder and president of New Glarus Brewery; Paul Saginaw, co-owner and founding partner of Zingermans; Brewers Association Director Paul Gatza; and Chief Economist Bart Watson, who will deliver the annual State of the Industry Address.

“The Craft Brewers Conference brings together the expertise and passion of its internal brewing community and voices outside as well,” Gatza said in a statement. “Through this year’s choices for keynote speakers, we want to offer CBC attendees words of wisdom, inspiration and experience. The combination of Paul and Deb provides insights into the crucial components of building and sustaining success in the brewing community.”

Saginaw will speak at 9:15 a.m. on May 1. He co-founded Zingerman’s Delicatessen in 1982 in Ann Arbor, Mich., with his business partner Ari Weinzweig. With the goals of producing a great corned beef sandwich and creating an organization with a soulful culture, they transformed their venture into a community of businesses, consisting of 22 partners and more than 750 employees.

Carey, a lifelong entrepreneur, started her first business at 16 years old. Later, in 1993, she raised the capital to establish New Glarus Brewing Co., based in New Glarus, Wis., making her one of the first women to found and operate a brewery in the country. Under Carey’s leadership, New Glarus has become a national icon as one of the largest U.S. craft breweries by volume, while still being acclaimed for its local, in-state focus.

CBC 2018 also serves as home to the World Beer Cup. Developed in 1996 to celebrate the art and science of brewing, this global competition continues to create greater consumer awareness about different beer styles and flavor profiles while promoting international brewing excellence. In 2016, 6,596 beers were submitted by 1,907 breweries, representing 55 countries, in the World Beer Cup and were judged by an elite international panel of 253 judges from 31 countries. This year is expected to be even more competitive, as craft brewing continues to attract an even broader universe around the globe. BI