Production of Beer

Cropton, a typical UK microbreweryThe brewing industry is a global business, consisting of several dominant multinational companies and many thousands of smaller producers ranging from brewpubs to regional breweries.[26] More than 133 billion liters (35 billion gallons) are sold per year—producing total global revenues of $294.5 billion in 2006

A microbrewery, or craft brewery, is a modern brewery which produces a limited amount of beer. The maximum amount of beer a brewery can produce and still be classed as a microbrewery varies by region and by authority, though is usually around 15,000 barrels (18,000 hectolitres/ 475,000 US gallons) a year. A brewpub is a type of microbrewery that incorporates a pub or other eating establishment.

SABMiller became the largest brewing company in the world when it acquired Royal Grolsch, brewer of Dutch premium beer brand Grolsch.InBev was the second-largest beer-producing company in the world, and Anheuser-Busch held the third spot, but after the merger between InBev and Anheuser-Busch, the new Anheuser-Busch InBev company is the largest brewer in the world.

Brewing at home is subject to regulation and prohibition in many countries. Restrictions on homebrewing were lifted in the UK in 1963, Australia followed suit in 1972, and the USA in 1978, though individual states were allowed to pass their own laws limiting production.[