Breweries, especially craft operations, are good for their local economy, and the national economy at large. We have always felt this way, but now we know it to be true. A study from the Beer Institute has discovered that “U.S. brewers and beer importers are the foundation for an industry that employs more than 2 million Americans, directly and indirectly. Beer also contributed $246.6 billion to America’s economy and generated $49 billion in local, state and federal taxes,” and that “each job in a brewery supports other jobs in the agriculture, business and personal services, construction, finance insurance and real estate, manufacturing, retail, transportation and communication, travel and entertainment and wholesale sectors. ”
But lest you think that every penny you lay down for a nice bottle of craft beer helps workers, bear in mind that “more than 40 percent of what consumers pay for a beer goes to taxes.”
But according to the Beer Institute:
Currently pending in Congress, the bi-partisan Brewers Excise and Economic Relief (BEER) Act of 2013 would significantly reduce the federal excise tax on beer drinkers. Specifically, the BEER Act would roll back the federal excise tax from $18 for every 31-gallon barrel to $9 a barrel. For brewers producing less than two million barrels annually, the rate would be reduced to $3.50 on the first 60,000 barrels; and for those brewing less than 15,000 barrels, the federal excise tax would be eliminated.
We all pay taxes, and they are necessary for society to function, but 40% seems a bit high for a product that has been proven to help the economy immensely. However the excise tax situation tuns out, enjoy your craft beer with the knowledge that you are supporting people, jobs, and the local and national economy.