Brewers guild conference and trade show returns

The South Carolina Brewers Guild, the trade organization representing the interests of the state’s 130 independent craft breweries, has announced the return of its annual conference and trade show February 28 and March 1.

The event, presented by Frontier Mechanical, will host representatives from breweries and affiliate industries at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center, offering education, outreach, and networking opportunities to the people and the companies that power the Palmetto State’s $860 million craft beer industry.

The theme for 2023, and for many of the guild’s efforts throughout the year, is: Into the Future. As the number of South Carolina craft beer enthusiasts and producers have continued to grow, the guild’s focus now turns to modernization and progress. Over the course of the trade show’s 15 seminars and countless opportunities for collaboration and coordination, the brewing industry will be able to develop and expand.

“Our membership seeks to modernize the regulatory environment for South Carolina’s craft breweries, thereby ensuring that these small, locally owned businesses have the ability to grow without undue, government-imposed burdens,” said Campbell Mims, association manager for the guild. “One year ago, this event was our association’s first attempt to collaborate with and engage the brewing industry in our state; but today we celebrate how far the guild has come with South Carolina’s signature tribute to craft beer.”

The two keynote speakers for the conference and trade show are:

Bump Williams, of Bump Williams Consulting. Williams is among the most respected data analysts in the beverage industry and brings years of experience in spotting the patterns within the ebbs and flows of the market as breweries look to navigate the challenging waters of growth.

Dr. J. Nikol Jackson-Beckham, who serves as leader of the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion department of the Brewers Association, and founder of Crafted for All, a professional development platform focused on increasing opportunities within the craft beverage industry for people of all backgrounds and communities.

“It is a benchmark illustrating the progress our guild has made in recent months to have high-caliber, industry leaders, like Bump Williams and Dr. J, join us in our efforts to promote, protect and modernize South Carolina’s craft beer industry,” said Pearce Fleming, president of the S.C. Brewers Guild Board of Directors. “I am thrilled for our members to benefit from the knowledge the keynote speakers, breakout presenters and regulatory agencies provide as a value during the two-day event.”

The conference and trade show will also include the presentation of awards for the South Carolina Brewers Cup, the guild’s official statewide beer competition. For any breweries, vendors, or sponsors interested in participating, they can contact the Guild’s Events Coordinator Trenholm Hardison at [email protected] for more information.