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More support brewing for Alberta’s liquor industry

The Alberta government is committing ongoing support for the province’s rapidly expanding brewing and liquor production industry.

Premier Rachel Notley and Finance Minister Joe Ceci tour the Cold Garden Beverage Company brewery in Calgary

Premier Rachel Notley and Finance Minister Joe Ceci tour the Cold Garden Beverage Company brewery in Calgary

Budget 2017 includes $25 million for the Alberta Small Brewers Development Program. The province launched the program in August 2016 to help small, Alberta-based brewers grow their businesses.

A similar program for small distillers, wineries and meaderies is in the works. Meaderies produce a honey wine, known as mead.  

“Alberta farmers grow some of the world’s most sought after barley and agricultural products. It only makes sense to grow the brewing industry right here and support good jobs from grain to glass. We see a lot of growth potential for Alberta’s small brewers and our development program ensures their continued growth and success.”

Joe Ceci, President of Treasury Board, Minister of Finance

“We know continued growth in craft brewing allows us to expand markets and create jobs for Albertans. It also creates additional opportunities for our commodity producers to provide the ingredients for these products. The $25-million Small Brewers Development Program is one example of how we are diversifying the economy and helping Alberta-based companies increase production capacity, launch new products and develop new markets.”

Oneil Carlier, Minister of Agriculture and Forestry

"The Alberta Small Brewers Development Program has been a tremendous benefit to Alberta's burgeoning craft brewing industry. By recognizing the unique needs of small local brewers competing against multinational industrial players, the government has levelled the playing field, leading to dozens of new jobs and millions of dollars of new capital investment. Growth in Alberta craft beer continues, which is great news for Albertans."

Terry Rock, executive director, Alberta Small Brewers Association

The Alberta Small Brewers Development Program provided nearly $16 million in 2016-17 to help small Alberta-based brewers. Fifty small brewers have accessed the program since it was introduced last year. At the beginning of February, there were 51 brewers and brew pubs across the province, with at least 23 new breweries licensed to operate since May 2015.


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