Business

Beer is big business in Bay State

BOSTON – Every glass of beer consumed in Massachusetts strengthens the state’s economy.A new economic impact study shows that America’s beer industry, comprised of brewers, beer importers, beer distributors, brewer suppliers, and retailers, directly and indirectly contributes $4,485,392,664 annually to the state’s economic well being.The study, commissioned by the National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA) and the Beer Institute, also shows that the industry’s economic impact in Massachusetts includes 44,807 jobs – paying $1,603,316,787 in wages – as well as $156,244,738 in federal, state, and local taxes.”Beer distributors are proud providers of 95,000 quality jobs with solid wages and great benefits in every state and congressional district across the country,” said Phil Terry, chief executive officer of Monarch Beverage Company in Indianapolis, Indiana, and chairman of NBWA. “As privately-owned businesses, beer distributors are invested in their communities and work hard to ensure the effective state-based system of alcohol regulation, which works to keep communities and consumers safe.”Tom Long, president and chief commercial officer of MillerCoors and chairman of the Beer Institute, said America’s brewing industry plays a pivotal role in supporting this nation’s economic viability. “Brewers in Massachusetts have been a driving force in their communities for years by creating jobs and tax revenue for public services, and promoting alcohol awareness responsibility initiatives for retailers, schools, and families,” he said.Salem Beer Works is a prime example of a brewery with pub and restaurant located in the heart of Salem’s tourist district, but not solely dependent on seasonal customers. The brewery is part of the neighborhood, providing jobs and local tax revenue.Just how significant a role does Massachusetts play in the beer industry?The new study indicates that the state’s beer industry directly employs 26,682 people, paying them a combined $751,931,183 in wages. The 28 beer distributors in Massachusetts employ 2,094 people. Large and small brewers and beer importers employ approximately 687 people. Beer sales help support roughly 23,902 jobs at licensed retailers, which include supermarkets, convenience stores, restaurants, bars and stadiums.Nationally, the beer industry directly and indirectly contributes more than $198 billion annually to the U.S. economy and provides nearly 1.9 million jobs – generating nearly $62 billion in wages and benefits. The industry also paid $41 billion in business, personal and consumption taxes in 2008. Consumption taxes included $3.8 billion in federal excise taxes, $1.7 billion in state excise taxes and $5.7 billion in state and local sales taxes.These numbers demonstrate that our industry is essential to several sectors of the U.S. economy, particularly as the nation struggles to regain its footing in this uncertain climate,” said Jeff Becker, president of the Beer Institute. “For this reason, it is important that state and federal officials consider equitable tax policies that do not unduly harm an industry that provides so many domestic jobs and so much economic growth.”The Economic Impact study was conducted by John Dunham & Associates based in New York City and covers data compiled in 2008. The complete study, including state-by-state and congressional district breakdowns of economic contributions, is available at Beer Serves America, www.BeerServesAmerica.org.

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