Report: Beer distributors big economic contributor

A new report confirms that beer not only tastes good, it’s also good for the economy.

In Colorado, beer distributors account for an estimated $987 million in total economic effects, including $215 million in federal, state and local tax revenues. A total of another $124 million in federal, state and local alcohol excise taxes are collected on beer sold in Colorado.

 In addition, beer distributors directly employ 2,457 people in Colorado. And when the total economic effects of beer distributors are calculated, the number of jobs associated with the industry climbs to nearly 6,200.

Colorado beer distributors contribute to an estimated $243 million in transportation efficiencies for the beer industry each year. What’s more, distributor contributions to local community activities account for another $2.7 million in economic effects, the report states.

“The beer distribution sector is a hidden gem that has been tremendously undervalued in previous economic reports,” said Bill Latham, co-author of the report for the National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA).

The association represents 3,300 independent beer distributor operations across the United States.

Latham and Ken Lewis at the Center for Applied Business & Economic Research at the University of Delaware compiled the report.

The report offers a comprehensive look at the economic effects of beer distributors on state economies as well as the national economy.

Nationally, beer distributors add an estimated $54 billion to the U.S. gross domestic product and account for a total of more than 345,000 direct and indirect jobs, Latham said.

Craig Pursur, president and chief executive officer of the NBWA, said the report offers a closer look at previously unreported economic benefits.

“Distributors deliver economic benefits in their communities through local business-to-business commerce, investment in local infrastructure and capital assets and tax revenue,” Pursur said. “They provide services that improve efficiency for trading partners, especially small brewers and retailers, and they ensure fair prices and a broad selection of products for consumers to enjoy.”