Illinois beer distributors recognize economic benefit of alcohol. File photo
The National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA) and Illinois' independent beer distributors recognized employees within the beer distribution industry this week whose work has had a positive impact on the economy.
"From truck drivers to fork lift operators and from sales representative to graphic artists, America's beer distribution employees work day in and day out to make this the best beer market in the world for everyone," said Craig Purser, president and CEO of NBWA.
The Beer Serves America economic impact study released this summer showed that the beer industry -- made up of brewers, beer importers, beer distributors and beer retailers -- contributes more than $10 billion annually to Illinois's economy.
"With more than 3,700 breweries in operation across the U.S. today, independent distributors are delivering more beer varieties and brands to the marketplace than ever before," Purser said. "Because of distribution employees, who drive the beer trucks in local communities, fill coolers and deliver new tap handles to neighborhood pubs, consumers can choose from an unparalleled variety of beer -- from familiar domestic brands to intriguing imports and exciting new products from local and small craft brewers. That's something we can all celebrate."
Jointly commissioned by the National Beer Wholesalers Association and the Beer Institute, the study shows that Illinois' independent distributors alone generate more than 5,700 local jobs in Illinois -- accounting for more than $433 million in wages and benefits and $926 million in economic output.