Beer Industry Contributes $8.7 Billion Annually to Pennsylvania Economy

As the Pennsylvanian liquor privatization bill heads to the Senate, a new economic impact study has been released with new figures regarding how much money, as well as the number of jobs the beer industry adds to the state’s economy.

The bill, if passed, would allow private retailers to sell beer and wine instead of the current system of state or ABC stores. Many brewers, beer importers, and distributors have opposed this change, and today, The Beer Institute, a national trade association for the brewing industry, has released a new economic impact study showing why they oppose this change.

According to the study, which was also commissioned by the National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA), America’s beer industry contributes $8.7 billion annually to Pennsylvania’s economy and is linked to 70,650 local jobs. The industry also contributed $1.2 billion in the form of business and personal taxes in 2012.

“America’s beer industry continues to play a significant role in supporting the economy in each and every state, including Pennsylvania,” said CEO of MillerCoors and Beer Institute chairman, Tom Long. “From the 115 brewers employing 1,740 people, to the roughly 16,504 licensed retailers, like supermarkets, convenience stores, restaurants, bars and stadiums, the beer industry is vital to local economies.”

“In addition to providing quality jobs with solid wages, the independent, three-tier beer distribution system provides transparency and accountability and works to ensure alcoholic beverages are sold only to licensed retailers who in turn are responsible for selling only to adults of legal drinking age,” added NBWA President Craig Purser.

Proponents of the liquor privatization bill say it’s a conflict of interest for the state to sell liquor while simultaneously enforcing alcohol laws. They also say privatization would make purchasing liquor in the state more convenient.

Source: The Beer Institute