After years of big growth, Colorado craft beer industry is slowing

Matt Schubert, Denver Post
Venus Veroneau, of Dry Dock Brewing Co., shares a laugh with a beer enthusiast before she takes off to her next destination at the 2014 Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Festival in Vail. Big Beers maxed out the conference space at the Vail Cascade in 2014.
Anthony Thornton | Daily file photo |

DENVER — After years of double and triple digit growth, craft beer is slowing, weighed down by intense competition and even systemic changes to Colorado’s beer market. There are more than 300 breweries now in Colorado. Competition to be the cold one you reach for is coming from both the biggest and smallest breweries.

Craft beer owns the market here and Bart Watson, an economist at the Brewers Association, said we “may be reaching that point of a mature marketplace where it’s more difficult to grow the overall share.”

Denver saw a record number of tap rooms open in 2017 and there are more than 80 breweries in the city now. Given that the Mile High City is soaking in suds, Brian O’Connell, the owner of Renegade Brewing, admitted that you can “tend to get a little myopic.”

“You think beer rules the world, right? And then you step back, and you’re like, ‘well, no, it actually doesn’t,’” he said.

Read the full story via The Denver Post.

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