Sustainable Microbreweries

I was recently interviewed by Nikki Wiart for a story about “Sustainable Microbreweries.” Other interviewees include my University of Alberta colleague Matthew Grimes, and Neil Herbst, owner and founder of Alley Kat Brewing Company, Edmonton’s oldest microbrewery.

The segment covered a range of issues: the importance of distinctiveness and legitimacy, the liability of newness, and some of the policy considerations related to small and large businesses. Below is one quote from the interview:

A lot of small businesses [and] new startups face a similar set of challenges, which [are]: one, around distinctiveness. What is my point of difference? How do I compete in the marketplace? But then [two] also around legitimacy. So, how is it that my customers and other stakeholders are going to take me seriously and think that I am viable? … Whether you are a microbrewery or some other kind of business, those are the kinds of challenges you are facing.

The interview was broadcast on Terra Informa, a weekly environmental program produced by CJSR and syndicated to about 50 radio stations throughout Canada. The interview starts about 2 minutes into the program and runs about 10 minutes long.

In addition to Alley Kat Brewing Company (which was founded in 1994), two other microbreweries call the Edmonton area home: Amber’s Brewing Company (founded in 2007) and Yellowhead Brewery (founded in 2010). Of note, Yellowhead Brewery is located in the space formerly occupied by Maverick Brewing Company (which was founded in 2005 and went out of business in 2007). The Alberta Small Brewers Association counts 11 members throughout the province.