Brewers association

Brewers Association Releases 2021 Rankings of Top 50 Craft Breweries by Volume; Athletic, Fiddlehead Vault in the leaderboards

The Brewers Association (BA) also released its 2021 ranking of the top 50 craft breweries by sales volume, in addition to sharing that craft brewer volumes grew by +8% last year.

The top five brewers remained stable, ranked in order: DG Yuengling, Boston Beer Company, Sierra Nevada, Duvel Moortgat and Shiner maker Gambrinus.

The jockey for the positions started in sixth place, Bell’s Brewery skipping the CANarchy Craft Brewery Collective, which was acquired by energy drink maker Monster earlier this year. Bell’s itself has also been acquired by Lion Little World Beverages, owner of New Belgium, and unlike CANarchy, it will fall from the BA’s 2022 rankings as it no longer meets the BA’s craft brewer definition of a small independent craft brewery. The BA defines craft brewers as those that produce less than 6 million barrels per year and are not more than 25% owned by a liquor company that is not itself a craft brewer.

Artisanal Brewing Ventures and Stone Brewing Co. remained in 8th and 9th place respectively.

SweetWater Brewing, now owned by global cannabis company Tilray, cracked the top 10, swapping places with Deschutes Brewery, which came in at No. 11.

Several brewers who have taken giant steps to join the list for the first time. Non-alcoholic beer maker Athletic Brewing went from No. 65 to No. 27, the Stratford, Connecticut-based brewer crossing the 100,000-barrel threshold last year.

Kona Brewing in Hawaii returned to No. 29, having reverted to Craft BA status after Anheuser-Busch InBev and Craft Brew Alliance spun off Kona’s Hawaii operations to complete their merger.

Maui Brewing, which was unranked in 2020, ranked No. 43; Scofflaw Brewing jumped 21 places to take 45th place. Fiddlehead Brewing climbed 37 places to rank 49th; and North Coast Brewing returned to the top 50 after a year-long hiatus to take No. 50.

Six craft breweries made it out of the top 50 in 2021, including BrewDog (#41 in 2020), Toppling Goliath (#43 in 2020), Two Roads (#44 in 2020), Fremont Brewing (#45 in 2020) ), Montauk Brewing (#49 in 2020) and New Holland (#50 in 2020). Five of those six breweries (all but Two Roads, which was new to the 2019 list) were unique after appearing on the Top 50 list for the first time in 2020. The 2021 rankings for these companies were not shared.

Here is the ranking of numbers 11 to 50, with their 2020 ranking in parentheses:

No. 11 Deschutes Brewery (No. 10 in 2020)

No. 12 New Glarus (No. 12)

Brooklyn Brewery No. 13 (No. 14)

No. 14 Matt Brewing (No. 13)

#15 Gordon Biersch (#27)

No. 16 Abita (No. 19)

No. 17 Minhas (No. 18)

No. 18 Stevens Point (No. 16)

No. 19 Great Lakes (No. 22)

No. 20 Odell (No. 17)

Harpoon No. 21 (No. 15)

Summit No. 22 (No. 21)

No. 23 Allagash (No. 29)

No. 24 Tröegs (No. 20)

No. 25 Georgetown (No. 28)

No. 26 Three Floyds (No. 24)

Athletic Brewery #27 (#65)

No. 28 Rhinegeist (No. 25)

No. 29 Kona Brewing (N/R)

No. 30 August Schell (No. 23)

No. 31 Alaskan Brewing (No. 26)

No. 32 Narragansett (No. 32)

No. 33 Rogue Ales (No. 37)

No. 34 Kings & Convicts/Ballast Point (No. 30)

Flying Dog No. 35 (No. 35)

#36 Long Trail (#31)

No. 37 Lost Coast (No. 38)

No. 38 Revolution (No. 39)

No. 39 Surly (No. 36.)

No. 40 Ninkasi (No. 33)

No. 41 Creature Comfort (No. 48)

No. 42 21st Amendment (No. 34)

No. 43 Maui Brewing (N/R)

No. 44 Saint Arnold (No. 42)

No. 45 Scofflaw (No. 66)

Shipyard No. 46 (No. 46)

#47 left hand (#47)

No. 48 Modern Times (No. 40)

Fiddlehead No. 49 (No. 86)

No. 50 North Coast (No. 53)

According to the BA, 66.6% of total craft volume was reported in its 2021 survey, while 7.6% was taken from state excise duty reports and 25.7% was reported. estimated from other sources. Production figures do not include FMB, hard seltzer, cider, or other offerings beyond beer.

The BA will publish its full 2021 industry report in the May/June issue of The New Brewer magazine, and BA Chief Economist Bart Watson will share more details at the Craft Brewers 2022 conference in Minneapolis. May 2-5.