Clan Brewing Co to break world’s biggest craft beer market with US deal

Scottish craft beer producer Clan Brewing Co has unveiled a “breakthrough” deal that will see its range exported to the lucrative US market.

Clan Brewing Cos craft beer range will be unveiled to US buyers at a trade show in Las Vegas today. Picture: Jamie McFadyen
Clan Brewing Cos craft beer range will be unveiled to US buyers at a trade show in Las Vegas today. Picture: Jamie McFadyen

The Glasgow business, the brewing arm of Craft Beer Clan, has sealed an import and distribution deal with Indiana-headquartered Copper Mountain Beverage Company to bring its whisky barrel-aged drinks to the world’s largest craft beer market.

Its range will be unveiled to potential US buyers at the National Beer Wholesalers Association (NBWA) trade show in Las Vegas today.

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Director Chris Miller said: “This is a significant breakthrough for the Clan Brewing Co. We’re expectant of strong interest from buyers and the trade in general this weekend.

“One of the main hurdles faced by brewers wanting to export to the States is securing a US import and distribution partner, which we now have.”

Clan Brewing Co is a partnership venture formed by Scott Williams, founder and master brewer of Alloa-based Williams Brothers Brewing Co; international whisky consultant Charles MacLean; and Glasgow drinks exporter JW Filshill International.

Each of its four beer recipes has a “flavour profile” that matches the whisky casks sourced from Islay, Lowland, Speyside and Highland in which they are aged.

Reports forecast that the global craft beer market will reach more than $502 billion (£400bn) by 2025. Miller said a solid US foothold was a critical step towards Scottish craft brewers taking a larger slice of global volume and revenues.

The Copper Mountain agreement follows JW Filshill’s appearance at the NBWA last year where a series of face-to-face engagements helped to broker the latest deal.

Miller added: “These events, whether it’s the NBWA trade fair in Las Vegas or Hofex in Hong Kong, and the meetings they enable, are critical to the ongoing export success of Scottish craft producers.

“They allow us to meet the key buyers and distributors. They allow us to put the beer or spirit in their hands and tell its story.”

In recent years JW Filshill has also driven sales of Scottish craft beer and spirits in key markets in the Asia-Pacific region, including in Japan, Hong Kong and China.