There are  74 breweries in Vermont, one for every 5,856 legal drinkers in the Green Mountain State resident. Considering that some craft brewers whip up as many as 75 beer flavors each year, you can get drunk just from reading this. 

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 Vermont is Number 1 in the United States when counting breweries per capita, but it is not alone in the saturation of suds. Colorado has over 400, and nationwide, there are now about 9,750 breweries.  

"But in 2023, the smallest number of new breweries in over a decade will open, the Colorado-based trade group Brewers Association predicts," the Wall Street Journal reports.  


Meanwhile, Vermont brewed 387,820 barrels of craft beer in 2021, ranking 18th in production compared to all other states. About 40% of those barrels are filled with IPA, which means India Pale Ale, or Incredibly Prolific Adaptations when you consider that brewers have tossed in everything from avocados to zucchinis during the beer-making process, almost like composting in kegs.  

Since Vermont has only 433,348 residents 21 or older, state brewers rely heavily on out-of-state visitors and buyers for their success. But with all states in the northeast offering quality beer and more craft breweries, the industry is looking at the cap going back on the bottle.  

"The business has gone from a basement brewery to a hilltop 40-acre destination that produces more than 40,000 barrels annually and generates around $15 million in revenue, according to President and Chief Executive Leah Wong Ashburn [of Highland Brewing Company in Asheville, North Carolina]."

She says she worries for the industry and how crowded the field has become" said the WSJ article. She could have been talking about Vermont.   

“We’re still a collaborative industry, but the competition is now such that I think it’s overwhelming for consumers who haven’t been into craft beer,” Mrs. Ashburn says. “If they walk by the cooler and see 1,000 choices, they have no idea what to do.”

Compass Vermont has one suggested solution: celebrate the fine quality of beer brewed in the Green Mountain State as you would maple syrup and cheddar cheese.