The beer industry in WA contributes significantly to the economic vitality of our state. I propose Washington State recognize the significance of our natural resources and craft beer culture by officially adding "beer" as the State Drink.
· Hops grown in Washington account for 77 percent of the US hop crop; the US hop crop represents one third of the world’s hop crop (source: WA Brewers Guild)
· Washington State is ranked fifth in the nation’s top wheat producing states. In addition, wheat ranks number three in the Washington commodities based on production value, representing $1 billion. Washington is one of the nation’s leading wheat-exporting states, with 85 to 90 percent of its production exported each year. (source: WA Grain Commission).
· Washington State ranks 2nd in the US for total number of breweries, with 324 breweries now operating across Washington, generating approximately 15,000 full time jobs and $1.6 Billion in economic activity (source: Brewers Association)
· When coupled with the revenue generated by distributors and retailers, WA brewers economic impact totaled in excess of $6 billion (source: Beer Institute)
· Washington is the only state in the country that has an official Beer Commission: Washington Beer Commission. Established by the Washington State Legislature in 2006, it is the only commodity commission of its kind.
According to our own Washington State Legislature website, “Symbols are often adopted after a concerted effort by citizens to have a significant item recognized for its importance to the state.”
The craft beer industry does not show any signs of slowing down. We have a strong argument for recognizing our natural resources, especially hops and the enduring agricultural profile combined with the overall positive economic impact the brewing industry has on our state. Washington’s breweries, many of them small and family owned, are an integral part of their local communities, operating in all areas of our state
- State Representative
Make Beer the Official State Drink of WA
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