A Pennsylvania company has surpassed Boston Beer to become No. 1, though it still has only 1.2% of the US market.
A new beer maker has surged ahead to become the largest in America — and it probably isn’t the one you think.
Anheuser-Busch, the maker of the No. 1 beer Bud Light? Nope. That’s a subsidiary of Anheuser-Busch InBev, which is based in Belgium.
How about MillerCoors, which makes No. 2 beer Coors Light? Nope. MillerCoors is a joint venture of London’s SABMiller and Molson Coors, which operates out of Montreal and Denver.
The biggest U.S. brewer is now D.G. Yuengling and Son, based in Pottsville, Pa., the Allentown Morning Call reports. Yuengling saw shipments soar 16.9% last year to 2.5 million barrels. As a result, it barely squeaked into first place, surpassing Sam Adams maker Boston Beer, which rose 8% to 2.4 million barrels.
“It just floors me that so much of our beer industry is owned by foreign concerns,” Dick Yuengling, the brewery’s fifth-generation owner, told the Morning Call. “We were not in any race to be the largest domestically owned brewer, but it’s a tremendous honor for us.”
And Yuengling’s sales will likely increase for 2012 because it just started selling beer in its 14th state, Ohio, the Morning Call reported.
Yuengling’s growth is even more remarkable because the industry has been in a prolonged slide. Total beer shipments fell by 1.4% last year, Advertising Age reported.
The beer industry saw another shakeup last year: Coors Light surpassed Budweiser to become the No. 2 beer. It was the first time in decades that Anheuser-Busch hasn’t controlled the top two beers in the country.
The following video has more details about Budweiser’s long slide.