Homebrewing hobby sees explosive growth in recent years
Boulder, CO • February 14, 2012—The American Homebrewers Association (AHA) reached a milestone this month with more than 30,000 members. The 34-year-old not-for-profit organization has reached this record number thanks in part to the hobby’s recent growth in popularity. Current estimates indicate that approximately 1 million Americans are making their own beer and wine at home.
The homebrewing craft has a long history in the U.S., dating back to the colonial era. However, an official organization for hobbyists was not established until 1978, shortly after President Jimmy Carter signed the bill that legalized homebrewing. Prior to that, the hobby was illegal thanks to a vestige of prohibition-era law. Buoyed by their newfound freedom, Charlie Papazian and Charlie Matzen founded the AHA that December with the first publication of Zymurgy magazine.