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March 30, 2018

Breweries unveil plan to promote unified Maine brand

Photo / Fred Field
Photo / Fred Field
The Buck brothers from left, Joshua, Jacob, Jared, and Caleb in Mapleton, are 2017 Mainebiz Next honorees and owners of the Maine Malt House in Mapleton who've helped distribute 50 customized tap handle risers saying “Brewed with Maine Grown Grains" to breweries around the state.

Plans are in the works to distribute 50 customized tap handle risers saying "Brewed with Maine Grown Grains," to breweries around the state.

The County reported the unified plan was unveiled by Focus Maine, Coastal Enterprises Inc. and the Maine Brewers' Guild and stems from Joshua and Jacob Buck, owners of Maine Malt House in Mapleton who, with their brothers Jared and Caleb, were 2017 Mainebiz Next honorees for their impact on Maine's economic growth.

Sean Sullivan, executive director of the Maine Brewers Guild, said the idea of the product is to create bottom-up interest from consumers and top-down interest from breweries.

"People often ask, about wine, what style it is and where it is from. Beer doesn't want to be that snooty, but in the long run we think, and hope, people will be saying, 'What kind of beer is this, and where is it from?'" Sullivan said during a March 22 presentation to Aroostook County entrepreneurs and farmers.

Craft beer makes up about 20% of the beer consumed in America, an increase from about 10% five years ago, with room to grow, Sullivan said.

The Maine-branded riser is designed to pique the interest of consumers to try Maine beer, "which will then embolden brewers to purchase more grains, which will in turn help farmers be emboldened to plant more acres and grow the size of their facilities and malt houses and really create a vibrant economy here in Maine," he said.

The guild will study data from the initial 50 risers to determine if it's a valuable marketing proposition, he said.

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