The definition of “craft beer” is murky at best. According to the Brewers Association, the organization that put out the 50 Biggest Craft Breweries List you see below, to qualify as a craft brewery, a brewery must be small (they produce 6 million barrels of beer or less a year), independent (less than 25% of the brewery is owned or controlled by a non-craft brewery), and traditional (they at least somewhat brew traditional beer). Now that’s a lot of wiggle room, especially when you consider that Sierra Nevada, who comes in third on the list, doesn’t produce anywhere close to 6 million barrels a year. Still, it is a way to separate the independent spirits from the massive macro machines. So, without further ado, according to their stipulations, these are the biggest craft breweries of 2016:

  1. D. G. Yuengling & Son, Inc
  2. Boston Beer Co.
  3. Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
  4. New Belgium Brewing Co.
  5. Gambrinus
  6. Duvel Moortgat
  7. Bell’s Brewery, Inc.
  8. Deschutes Brewery
  9. Stone Brewing Co.
  10. Oskar Blues Brewing Holding Co.
  11. Brooklyn Brewery
  12. Minhas Craft Brewery
  13. Artisanal Brewing Ventures
  14. Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
  15. SweetWater Brewing Co.
  16. New Glarus Brewing Co.
  17. Matt Brewing Co.
  18. Harpoon Brewery
  19. Alaskan Brewing
  20. Abita Brewing Co.

Check out the rest of the top 50 here.


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