Swan closure opens door for craft brewers

The head of WA's second biggest brewer says the impending closure of the Swan Brewery represents a key opportunity for the State's growing number of craft breweries.

Gage Roads Brewing will succeed Swan as the State's biggest beer producer when the Canning Vale brewery closes in March.

Managing director John Hoedemaker said the closure was a sad moment for WA brewing, but it represented an opening for local producers.

"It's an opportunity for the craft brewers of Western Australia to really step up and show our wares," Mr Hoedemaker said.

"It's sad to see (Swan) go, but in the end they were making products that weren't really selling."

With the demise of Swan, the title of new standard bearer for WA brewing is up for grabs.

While Gage Roads is the biggest, beers from Fremantle's Little Creatures, the Feral Brewing Company in the Swan Valley and Broome's Matso's Brewery have all received national acclaim.

Mr Hoedemaker said it was an exciting time for the local industry, with demand for craft beer from WA drinkers growing by 10 per cent a year.

The West Australian

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