What are the historic success and failure rates of breweries?

We find out the success behind Abnormal Beer company is pretty normal after all.

I quote a close friend: “Craft brewers must have a license to print money.” It was a statement uttered shortly after informing said friend about Cincinnati’s Fifty West Brewing’s $1.5 million expansion, which includes volleyball courts and a cycling business. It seems like every week we announce an exotic expansion or a how-is-that-even-possible success story — from the posh, new pub/restaurant/music venue/brewery that the folks at SLO Brew are building (replete with rentable lofts) to SweetWater Brewing’s announcement that it’s looking for not just one, but TWO new breweries to expand westward.

Sometimes, to the public, it must certainly appear that craft brewers are riding an unstoppable beer train of success (totally different from this snowpiercer), but is that perception a reality?

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In New York, Good Times Flow for Craft Brewers

At Rushing Duck Brewing Co., a microbrewery in New York’s Orange County, owners used to pour free samples of beer, because state law prohibited charging customers for a pint at breweries’ tasting rooms.

“We were getting about 200 people per weekend in, and from a keg perspective, that is 2½ full kegs we were going through for free,” said brewery co-owner Nikki Cavanaugh.

But in December 2014, with a new state law taking effect, the brewery began selling pints for the first time. “It increased our revenue drastically,” said Ms. Cavanaugh, 29 years old, who in 2012 founded the brewery about 60 miles north of New York City with her husband, Dan Hitchcock.

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