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Study: Beer is a $2.3 billion business in Tampa Bay

Margie Manning



Photo by Jack Harner on Unsplash

The beer industry accounted for more than 16,000 direct and indirect jobs and total economic output of $2.3 billion in the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater metro area in 2018.

The figures include not only brewers, distributors and hospitality workers, but also companies that make bottles, cans and cardboard cases, as well as equipment and marketing displays, according to  a study prepared for The Beer Institute and the National Beer Wholesalers Association.

“Beer is more than America’s most popular alcohol beverage. The beer industry is vital to the United States, generating more than 2.1 million jobs and contributing $328 billion to the American economy,” Jim McGreevy, president and CEO of the Beer Institute, said in a news release.

The biennial study, Beer Serves America, broke down direct and indirect employment, wages and economic impact by states and congressional districts. Here’s a look at the total impact in Florida’s 12th congressional district (northern Pinellas and Pasco counties), 13th congressional district (central and south Pinellas county, including St. Petersburg) and 14th congressional district (part of Hillsborough County, including Tampa).

Statewide, the beer industry contributed $18.9 billion to Florida’s economy and supported 153,054 jobs in 2018. The industry also accounted for $2.7 billion in business and personal taxes and $952.1 million in consumption taxes, the study said.

Other key findings from the study include:

The total number of brewing facilities nationwide has grown by 1,191 in two years, most being very small brewers or brewpubs.

Overall volume of beer sales is down by about 2.4 percent over 2016, but brewing jobs increased by 8 percent, representing growth in micro and brewpub employment as well as growth in higher margin products.

There continues to be a shift away from less expensive products to more expensive local and craft beers in bars and restaurants, as well as to imports.

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