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At Their Convention in Cleveland, Ohio Craft Brewers Laud the Tax Cut

A picture of hops.
Mark Urycki
/
IDEASTREAM

The Ohio Craft Brewers Association is holding its annual convention in Cleveland this week, and business has been good. Ohio has 265 small breweries and most started in just the past three to four years. 

The brewers are feeling good about a new cut in the federal excise tax that was sponsored by Ohio's U.S. Sen. Rob Portman. For small brewers, the tax is cut in half from $7  a barrel to $3.50. Association spokesman Justin Hemminger says that’s a boon to these small businesses.

“Even just a few thousand dollars can mean the difference between whether or not you have the flexibility to make a capital improvement you’ve been looking to do for a while, hire a new staff. It’s absolutely essential to the bottom line of these breweries.”

For Columbus brewer Larry Horwitz, that means hiring more people. A board member for the national Brewers Association, Horwitz says Ohio offers some benefits to small brewers, like allowing them to distribute beer themselves.  

The brewers are feeling good about a new cut in the federal excise tax that was sponsored by Senator Rob Portman of Ohio. For small brewers the tax is cut in half from $7 dollars a barrel to $3.50. Association spokesman Justin Hemminger says that’s a boon to these small businesses.

“Even just a few thousand dollars can mean the difference between whether or not you have the flexibility to make a capital improvement you’ve been looking to do for a while, hire a new staff. It’s absolutely essential to the bottom line of these breweries.”

For Columbus brewer Larry Horwitz, that means hiring more people. A board member for the National Brewers Association, Horwitz says Ohio offers some benefits to small brewers, like allowing them to distribute beer themselves.  

“You can legitimately operate a pretty small brewery in Ohio and still feed your family. If your goal is to take over the world, that's a different situation. But we want to encourage small members to make and sell their products to the consumer, and Ohio is a great state for that right now.”

The Brewers Association ranks Ohio 4th in the nation for craftt-brew production.