America's independent beer distributors deliver commercial, economic and regulatory value in the communities where they do business.
For more than 80 years, state-based alcohol regulation and an independent system for alcohol production, distribution and sale have created an orderly market for beer and a level playing field for all participants.
Consumers benefit from this system and are protected from contaminated or counterfeit products. The three-tier structure allows for an accountable chain of custody, tracing the product from production to sale.
Many countries that do not have an effective system of alcohol regulation are experiencing epidemic levels of alcohol-related illnesses and increased binge drinking, youth consumption and exposure to adulterated products.
Within today’s three-tier system, beer distributors deliver direct economic benefit to their communities. They provide 135,000 full-time jobs with great benefits. They add $70 billion to the nation’s gross domestic product and contribute nearly $13 billion to the federal, state and local tax bases; and they indirectly contribute nearly $11 billion in federal, state and local alcohol excise and consumption taxes. Additionally, beer distributors contribute to local charitable, civic and philanthropic organizations each year.
An independent beer distribution network of 3,000 facilities provides equal access to market for all suppliers and allows new brewers and importers to grow. In the 1980s, there were fewer than 50 brewers in the U.S.; today, there are more than 6,000. Distributors create opportunities for new entrants and get their products to market, giving consumers unparalleled choice and variety.
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