Lagunitas Brewing Company, since May 2017 fully owned subsidiary of Heineken (inside.beer, 6.5.2017), and one of the leading craft beer breweries in the United States, is laying off 12 percent of its 900 employees. The reduction will affect all departments and all locations, but the majority of 100 job cuts will take place at it’s headquarter in Petaluma, California.
“The craft beer market is rapidly evolving and, in many ways, more challenging. More breweries, more choices …,” said Lagunitas CEO Maria Stipp.
As craft beer growth is slowing down (inside.beer, 3.7.2018), other craft beer pioneers had to announce lay-offs before.
In October 2016, Redhook Ale Brewery announced the layoff of 20 people, in its main brewery in Woodinville, Washington. The same month, Stone Brewing Co., the 10th largest craft brewing company in the U.S., said it would lay-off “approximately 5 percent”of its 1,200 employees. (inside.beer, 14.10.2016)
In January 2018, Summit Brewing Company from Saint Paul, Minnesota, another pioneer of craft brewing, sacked about 10 percent of its staff. (inside.beer, 2.1.2018). In February 2018, craft beer icon, New Belgium Brewing, announced that they’d let go 28 employees.
In June 2018, Green Flash Brewing ceased operations at a $20 million production facility in Virginia Beach, Virginia, shuttered its Cellar 3 barrel-aging facility and taproom in Poway, California and ended its national expansion strategy. (inside.beer, 20.6.2018)
Latest in row was Constellation Brands, which sacked the majority of its craft beer sales team this August.
Currently, Lagunitas operates three taprooms, one at it’s headquarter in Pataluma, California, and one in Chicago and Seattle each. Lagunita’s brewery and taproom in Charleston, South Carolina, had to be closed forever in July last year, when the old leased brick building from 1880 needed a costly repair. (inside.beer, 23.1.2018) Instead, Lagunitas considers opening new taprooms in European cities like Amsterdam and Paris.