Four score and three years ago, the first canned beer made its debut. The Gottfried Krueger Brewing Company, in collaboration with the American Can Company, delivered 2,000 cans of Krueger's Finest Beer and Krueger's Cream Ale to loyal beer drinkers in Richmond, Virginia. Ninety-one percent of Krueger beer drinkers favored the beer can, made of steel and weighing a mere four ounces, over the bottle. And so, America's love affair with beer cans began!
The first beer can was sold on January 24, 1935, and the consumer response was remarkable! Within three months, more than 80 percent of U.S. distributors were handling Krueger's canned beer. Competitors like Anheuser-Busch, Pabst and Schlitz quickly followed suit and started producing beer in cans. By the end of 1935, more than 200 million beer cans had been produced and sold.
According to the Brewers Association, canned beer accounts for approximately $30 billion of the $108 billion generated by the American Brewing Industry today. And it's not just from national brewers. There has been an increasing number of microbreweries coming out with cans. Not only are they more cost effective, but they also preserve the quality of the beer better than bottles. Cans are also lighter, more portable and better for the environment. What's not to like?
So today, let's raise a beer to celebrate National Beer Can Appreciation Day. Here's to 83 more years of great beer produced and sold in cans. Cheers!
MacKenzie Zarzycki was born and raised in Schuylerville, N.Y., where the beer flows like wine. Now a Certified Cicerone®, MacKenzie is on a mission to further her beer knowledge. When she’s not contributing to gotbeer.com, she’s nursing an unhealthy level of attachment to her dog, Kylie.