The growth of America’s craft beer scene is well documented: Smaller, independent brewers are flourishing as big beer companies fight declining sales. But an untold business story is the recent explosion of nanobreweries, operations far tinier than even microbreweries.
Growing demand for ever smaller, ever more local beer is opening new opportunities for talented homebrewers to test the marketplace for their beer. The mid-six figure investment required to start a microbrewery is too high a bar for most people who begin brewing as a hobby. But those who are serious and passionate about building a beer business can now launch nanobreweries with a much more attainable five-figure investment.
This new way to try going pro is why brewmasters are opening nanobreweries across America in growing numbers. That makes it interesting for drinkers, because nanobrewers make some of the most creative and unusual beers around.
In addition to this Marketplace audio report, Mark Garrison also reported on nanobrewing for Slate. You can read more in the companion story at Slate.