The Beer Ticker: Industry News & Notes, Midsummer 2022 Edition

From mergers and acquisitions to free gas money, here are some recent news and announcements from the industry.

Brewing Industry Guide Staff Jun 30, 2022 - 9 min read

The Beer Ticker: Industry News & Notes, Midsummer 2022 Edition Primary Image

The One In Four collab aims to help raise funds and awareness for domestic violence prevention. Image courtesy Third Space Brewing.

Open-Source Collab Aims to Help Prevent Domestic Violence

Milwaukee’s Third Space Brewing is inviting breweries across the country to join a beer collaboration to raise funds and awareness for the prevention of domestic violence. The beer is called One In Four, a reference to the statistic that one in four women and one in nine men say they have experienced some form of domestic violence. Third Space is encouraging breweries elsewhere to brew their own versions of One In Four to be released in October, designated as Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Participating breweries can donate proceeds to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence or a local group that supports victims of domestic or intimate partner violence. For more information, including the recipe and labels—and to sign up to join the collab—visit

Brewery X Wins Disputed Auction for Modern Times

Beating out bidders that included Maui Brewing and the founder of Next Glass, Brewery X of Anaheim, Califonia, was declared the winner of an auction to buy San Diego’s Modern Times Beer by an Orange County judge. Brewery X’s winning bid of $20 million was slightly less than the $20.1 million bid by MTD Asset Acquisition—a firm established by Kurt Taylor, the founder of Next Glass, parent company of the popular Untappd beer-rating platform. Taylor filed an objection, but the judge ultimately sided with Brewery X. Taylor, who stepped down as CEO of Next Glass in 2020, says that auction officials incorrectly referenced Delaware brewery TRU Colors—founded by his father, George Taylor—and that his bid had nothing to do with TRU Colors, Next Glass, or Untappd. Brewery X opened in 2019, founded by Paige and Carley Pennington, their father Chris Pennington, owner of Penwal Industries, and Clayton Wellbank.

Harpoon Parent Acquires Vermont’s Long Trail

Mass. Bay Brewing Company, the parent of Boston’s Harpoon Brewery, says it reached an agreement to acquire Long Trail Brewing and its brands, including Otter Creek and Shed. The deal gathers together a few legacy craft brands—Dan Kenary founded Harpoon in 1986, while Long Trail was founded in 1989 and Otter Creek in 1991. Long Trail and Otter Creek joined forces in 2010; the latter acquired the Shed in Stowe, Vermont, the following year and moved its brand and production to Middlebury. Now, WhistlePig Whiskey, based in Shoreham, Vermont, is taking over Otter Creek’s Middlebury plant and will transition it to bottling and distilling. Mass. Bay, meanwhile, says it will continue to operate Long Trail’s location in Bridgewater Corners while brewing all three brands at Harpoon’s brewery in Windsor, Vermont.

Fig Mountain Takes Over Four L.A.-Area Brewpubs

Fresh off two more World Beer Cup medals and riding on local growth, Figueroa Mountain Brewing says it is taking over four brewpubs in the Los Angeles area. Based in Santa Barbara County, California, Figueroa says it is assuming management of the Bluebird Brasserie in Sherman Oaks, the Broxton Brewery & Public House in Westwood Village, and the Stalking Horse Brewery & Freehouse in West L.A., as well as the Mohawk Bend brewery in Echo Park. According to the “coming soon” taproom locations listed on Figueroa’s website, the Stalking Horse will become the Agua Santa Cervecería; the Bluebird Brasserie will become the Lagerhaus; and the Broxton Brewery will become Fig @ UCLA. The company says that there will be no operational changes at Mohawk Bend. The brewpubs were previously under the management of the Artisanal Brewers Collective, which will continue to manage its local beer bars and restaurants, including the Library Bar in downtown L.A. Founded in 2010, Figueroa Mountain says it has enjoyed a surge of growth coming out of the pandemic.


Melvin Seeks “Strategic Partner,” Possible Sale

Wyoming-based Melvin Brewing is seeking a “strategic partner” and exploring a possible sale, according to a report on the industry news site Brewbound. The company announced that it is seeking a partner to “support and assist with current growth initiatives.”

Haas Releases a Hop Extract to Fight the Light

John I. Haas says its newly released Kettle Redi product provides added protection against lightstruck off-flavors. “This product provides light stability, smooth bittering, and hop-aroma characteristics to beer while offering microbiological protection during the brewing process,” the company says in the announcement. As with other extracts, the product helps to increase yields and reduce loss of wort to vegetative hop matter. The product is available beginning June 30.

Relax, Don’t Worry: Denver School Names Lab for Papazian

The Metropolitan State University of Denver says it has begun construction on a new laboratory facility named in honor of Charlie Papazian, founder of the American Homebrewers Association and Brewers Association. The lab will feature a 3.5-barrel brewing system for students of the school’s Brewery Operations Program. The school says that brewing-industry leaders contributed $425,000 of the funds for the $1 million project. “I’ve been a teacher and educator my entire adult life, from teaching preschool through [fourth] grade and showing adults how to homebrew to launching the American Homebrewers Association and the Brewers Association,” Papazian says in the announcement. “The original mission of those two organizations was educational, to make beer knowledge accessible to all. So the lab continues the flow of my life’s work, and it’s very fitting and exciting for me.” The lab is scheduled for completion in early 2023.

App Makes It Easy for Beer Distributors to Report Human Trafficking

Distributors who transport beer and make sales calls and on-site visits are uniquely positioned to observe and report suspected incidents of human trafficking—that’s the idea behind the National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA) initiative, Distributors Against Human Trafficking. As part of that initiative, the NBWA has worked with Encompass Technologies to incorporate a reporting function into its app platform, used by an estimated one-third of beer sales reps. “It’s a call to our industry colleagues to work together and to be the eyes and ears of the vulnerable,” says Kim McKinnish, senior VP and COO of the NBWA.

New Belgium to Provide Bars with Free Online Diversity Training

Bars and restaurants that serve New Belgium or Bell’s beer will have access to free inclusivity training, via a partnership between the breweries and diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) training provider HospitableMe. Announced in June, the Poured for All Initiative aims to help hospitality businesses become more welcoming and inclusive. The initiative also includes the breweries’ own taproom staff. The custom training “empowers hospitality staff to better understand and exhibit inclusive behaviors that foster a truly welcoming space for all identities, including people with LGBTQ+, BIPOC, and intersectional identities who are currently underrepresented in craft-beer spaces and elsewhere.” Beginning this fall, the training is to be available on HospitableMe’s digital platform. Previously in June, New Belgium and Bell’s announced the hiring of a director of DEI, Courtney Simmons, to oversee combined efforts at both breweries.

Iron Hill Offers Customers a “Gallon of Gas”

Aiming to lure customers concerned about rising prices, Iron Hill Brewery chain is offering to deduct from the tab the price of a gallon of gas for any customer who asks from July 2 to 4. The customer only needs to say, “Help fill my tank.” Iron Hill also is offering $10 four- and six-packs at its 20 locations as part of its “Fill Your Cooler” push.

American Canning Adds Capacity

American Canning in Austin says it has added a second line devoted to shrink-sleeved cans, adding capacity at a time when there remains a tight market on packaging supply. American also plans to open a new can manufacturing plant in Fall 2022.