"Anchor Steam Beer"

Anchor Brewing Co. Restricting Product Distribution to California

June 14, 2023
Citing inflation, cost of brewing techniques and competition in the craft brew space, the makers of Anchor Steam will no longer produce beer for national distribution.

Anchor Brewing Co., the San Francisco, Calif.-based brewer of Anchor Steam beer, announced it will end national distribution of its product and only produce beer for sale in the state of California.

The company told that the state accounts for 70% of its sales, and that inflation, the company’s brewing techniques and the highly competitive craft beer market helped push Anchor Brewing to this decision.

In addition, the company announced it will no longer brew its Christmas Ale, a specialty beer it has brewed since 1975, again citing costs to brew as well as packaging requirements.

Anchor traces its roots back to 1896 when Ernst F. Baruth and Otto Schinkel, Jr., bought the brewery and renamed it Anchor Brewery. The company was resurrected after the great earthquake and fire in San Francisco in 1906, and it survived Prohibition, but it nearly went bankrupt in 1965. Longtime owner Fritz Maytag rescued the company at that time — today, Anchor Brewing Co. is owned by Japanese brewery Sapporo, who acquired it in 2017 for $85 million.

About the Author

Andy Hanacek | Senior Editor

Andy Hanacek has covered meat, poultry, bakery and snack foods as a B2B editor for nearly 20 years, and has toured hundreds of processing plants and food companies, sharing stories of innovation and technological advancement throughout the food supply chain. In 2018, he won a Folio:Eddie Award for his unique "From the Editor's Desk" video blogs, and he has brought home additional awards from Folio and ASBPE over the years. In addition, Hanacek led the Meat Industry Hall of Fame for several years and was vice president of communications for We R Food Safety, a food safety software and consulting company.

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