New report gives NM fresh bragging rights on breweries per capita

Ed Note: A brewery is coming to T or C in 2017.

In a November report from the Department of Workforce Solutions, New Mexico ranked 12th in breweries per capita, based on 2013 data. Oregon was No. 1, followed by Vermont and Montana. With production of 58,247 barrels in 2013, New Mexico ranked 23rd in the nation for production per capita, resulting in an economic impact of $264.5 million, or $178 per capita, according to a figure from the New Mexico Brewers’ Guild. According to Business First numbers, New Mexico breweries produced more than 70,000 barrels in 2015.

From 2013 to 2016, liquor sales in the state decreased 32 percent, wine sales decreased 34 percent and sale of beer from large breweries dropped 7 percent, according to data from the state. But sales in beer from microbreweries increased 124 percent, from 18,427 gallons in 2007 to 41,210 in 2013.

In fact, microbreweries are producing so much beer the state changed its definition of a microbrewer from a business that produces less than 5,000 barrels of beer in a year to a business producing less than 15,000 barrels.

And with more beer comes more jobs.

The Department of Workforce Solutions counts 30 breweries in the state, according to the New Mexico Brewer’s Guild. Employment at New Mexico breweries went from 132 in 2003 to 298 in 2013. As of September, the state’s Regulation and Licensing Department counted 67 breweries in New Mexico.

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