Ohio beer industry grows, contributes $13 billion to economy - News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Ohio beer industry grows, contributes $13 billion to economy

(Source: WTOL) (Source: WTOL)
TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) -

Pour a tall one and toast the local breweries in the area, as the beer industry continues to grow in Ohio.

"People love beer," said head brewer for Black Cloister Brewery, Shannon Fink. The brewery opened a little more than two years ago on Monroe Street and it's been growing ever since.

"I can't believe how much has happened in two years. It's crazy," said Fink

The brewery has doubled its capacity since opening and is on pace for 1,500 barrels of beer this year. That's up from 400 the first year. She says the brewery also distributes throughout major Ohio and Michigan cities.

Fink isn't afraid of competition. She would actually like to see more breweries open in downtown Toledo to help to continue to revitalize the area.

"It would be nice if we could be kind of like a destination city like Grand Rapids, Michigan, where you can just go from one brewery to the next," said Fink.

And that possibility could actually turn into reality. Ohioans do like their beer.

A new report shows that the industry exploded in recent years. It contributed $13 billion to the state's economy last year. That's up $2 billion from the year before. In 2011, there were fewer than 50 breweries in the state. Now there are more than 200.

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