Craft beer

Ohio producers would gain by craft beer bill

A new bill moving through the state legislature would create an “Ohio Proud Craft Beer” certification for craft beer or hard cider made with Ohio-grown agricultural products.

The bill also would allow farmers markets to apply for a permit that would allow craft brewers to sell packaged beer and hard cider products for off-site consumption as well as offer 1-ounce samples. State Reps. Steve Hambley, R-Brunswick, and Martin Sweeney, D-Cleveland, are co-sponsors of House Bill 509.

The bill aligns with OFBF policy that supports the growth of the Ohio craft brewing, distilling and winemaking industries.

Craft brewing has exploded onto the scene in Ohio over the last few years

“Craft brewing has exploded onto the scene in Ohio over the last few years,” said Jenna Beadle, OFBF’s director of state policy. “The creation of the ‘Ohio Proud Craft Beer’ certification will promote the use of Ohio agricultural products and expand marketing capabilities for craft brewers. Many of these craft brewers begin with a local following and being able to sell their product at a farmers market will increase that following.”

Ohio is fourth in the nation in craft beer production with an economic impact of $2.67 billion in 2017, according to the Ohio Craft Brewers Association. The industry supports more than 15,000 jobs and currently there are 254 craft breweries with 88 new breweries in the planning stages.