Starting a Brewery? Watch Out for These Common Brewery Mistakes.
Guess how many breweries and brewpubs are currently active in Tennessee alone? Go ahead, guess. The answer? There are 76 of ‘em. That’s almost one craft brewery for each of Tennessee’s 96 counties. Heck, in 2016 alone, at least 11 microbreweries opened their doors in our state. So, to say there is a craft beer “boom” is an understatement. In fact, if you’re reading this post, there’s a good chance you’re among the entrepreneurs and beer enthusiasts contributing to Tennessee’s amazing craft beer scene. If so, it could be worth your while to spend a minute or two reviewing some of the most common brewery mistakes that may prevent new breweries from reaching their full potential.
Brewery Mistake #1: Not Protecting Your Personal Assets
When you’re first starting a brewery, we’re sure you have the intent of making a name for yourself and your brand. But life happens, and plans quickly go sour. Unless you’re brewing wild ales, that’s not such a good thing. To protect your personal assets in the event of a business-related liability, make sure your brewery is operating as a separate entity – most commonly as a limited liability company, corporation or partnership.
Brewery Mistake #2: Building a Stale Website
We get it. You’re passionate about your craft (no pun intended). At Zwirner, we’re passionate about ours too. But, we also recognize that it’s not 1997 anymore. Think of it this way. The craft beer industry has come a long way since the mid-90s, right? Well, the same thing is true about the way customers prefer to interact and engage with brands – including yours! The only thing worse than not having a website at all, is having a crappy one. Starting a brewery website can be difficult if you don’t have the resources to make it happen internally, so find a freelancer who is willing to work for cheap – or for free beer.
Brewery Mistake #3: Using Faulty Brewery Equipment
When you’re first getting started with production brewing, resources are often tight. There is a great deal of equipment needed to start a brewery that isn’t commonly used in many other aspects of one’s life. To save money, many new brewers wisely explore refurbished/reconditioned beer production equipment. In addition to costing less than new equipment, reconditioned products generally have a much faster turn-around. For you, that means less time waiting for deliveries and more time brewing your product. One caveat: Not all reconditioned equipment companies are created equal, so it’s critical to understand what you’re getting. Was that used heat exchanger you just purchased fully rebuilt and restored to factory specifications or was it simply prettied up? Ask questions before you spend your money.
Helping Brewers Avoid Mistakes with Quality Reconditioned Brewing Equipment