Though they are distributed in 32 states including Alaska, New Belgium has proven elusive to its many fans in Florida. Soon, though, the long wait for Fat Tire, Ranger and Lips of Faith will be over in the Sunshine stat as New Belgium announced today that they will open in Florida next month. Currently the plan is to roll 22-oz packaging of core brands as well as seasonal and Lips of Faith in July. Draft and 12-oz packaging will follow in September.
“Florida will be our 32nd state of distribution and it’s probably the one we’ve heard from most often about, ‘when are you all going to get here?’” said New Belgium Florida Sales Director, Jeff Sipes. “A lot of us have friends and family in state so it’s a bit of a homecoming that way. We’re excited.”
The news comes just months after the company announced plans to build its second brewery in Asheville, NC. The current time line has the new facility opening sometime in 2015. An 18-acre site at the former stockyards on Craven Road in West Asheville was chosen for its beauty and the company’s desire to make a difference in the neighborhood. The company actively sought out “brownfield” location – or previously developed sites that could be repurposed to spark renewed vitality. They also wanted to avoid taking agricultural land or natural habitat in order to become good neighbors to the community.
On the company’s website, Kim Jordan, CEO, said of the site, “There were easier sites to develop, but we chose this one because it’s beautiful, we think we can do a lot to restore it, and we believe that breweries, classified as light manufacturing, can revitalize a neighborhood, while provide great live-walk-bike opportunities for employees who in large measure, will come from Asheville.”
Florida distribution will be handled by seven distribution partners with plans to start selling beer in the state July 29th, 2013. Gold Coast Distributing, JJ Taylor, Florida Distributing, Cone Distributing, Goldring Gulf, and Champion Brands are all Miller Coors houses while Daytona Beverage is in the AB network.
New Belgium Brewing, makers of Fat Tire Amber Ale and a host of Belgian-inspired beers, is recognized as one of Outside Magazine’s Best Places to Work and one of the Wall Street Journal’s Best Small Businesses. The 100% employee owned brewery is a Platinum-level Bicycle Friendly Business as designated by the League of American Bicyclists, and one of World Blu’s most democratic U.S. businesses. In addition to Fat Tire, New Belgium brews eight year round beers; Ranger IPA, Shift Pale Lager, Sunshine Wheat, 1554 Black Ale, Blue Paddle Pilsener, Rampant Imperial IPA, Abbey Belgian Ale and Trippel.
- New Belgium Brewing Co. delays Asheville plant (blueridgenow.com)