Australia: GrainCorp buys largest distributor of craft-brewing ingredients

Cryer Malt, the largest distributor of craft-brewing ingredients in Australia and New Zealand has been purchased by Barret Burston Malting Co. (BBM), a subsidiary of the world’s fifth largest maltster, Sydney based GrainCorp.

Based in Auckland, New Zealand, Cryer Malt supplies for more than two and a half decades the fast growing craft beer industry in New Zealand, Australia and the Pacific Islands (Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Vanuatu) with malt and brewing aids and additives.

There are no changes in Cryer Malt’s operations or staffing planned, as Noel Johnson, General Manager of BBM said. “Cryer Malt have built up a strong customer-focused culture that is about supporting brewers and that is why we wanted to strengthen our partnership with them,” Johnson said.

Cryer Malt was established in 1991 in Auckland New Zealand, when founder David Cryer recognised the limited selection of malts available in New Zealand at the time. With the growth of the craft beer industry, Cryer Malt has grown to an important player in the brewing industry. Cryer supplies in New Zealand malt form Malteurop NZ and in Australia from BBM. The company also imports specialty malts from Germany (Weyermann), UK (Bairds, Thomas Fawcett) and Belgium (Mouterij Dingemans). In addition Cryer supplies the local brewing industry with brewing aids and additives for yeast flocculation, fermentation enhancement, clarity, foam stabilisation, colour, flavour stability and water treatment.

GrainCorp already owns similar companies in markets, where the company has own maltings.

In the United States and Canada the company owns two companies, which supply the homebrew and the craft beer market:

In 2010 Brewcraft USA, GrainCorp’s mainstay in the homebrewing industry throughout North America , became a subsidiary of Great Western Malting, the  US malting division of GrainCorp. The Vancouver, WA based company supplies a wide variety of local, imported, and specialty ingredients and equipment for the production of beer, wine, cheese, and spirits. Brewcraft announced three weeks ago the opening of their fifth distribution center (Vancouver, WA; Dallas, TX; Asheville, NC; Champlain, NY and now Chicago, IL).

Country MaltGroup, more focused on the craft brewing industry in North America was formed in 1995 as North Country Malt Supply by Bryan Bechard and his father, Claude. In 2010 the company was acquired by GrainCorp and has evolved into the Country Malt Group with 13 distribution centers across the United States and Canada. The company employs 40 people in its headquarter in Champlain and about 200 throughout North America.

In 2013 following the success of its North American operations, GrainCorp also set up another 'one-stop-shop' supplier to the craft beer industry in the United Kingdom, called Brewers Select. The company not only sells malts and hops but also supplies everything needed in the craft beer industry like flavorings, finings and stabilizers, cleaning materials and other consumables.

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