Last month, President Obama addressed the nation to review the successes and challenges of the past year and to provide an outlook for the coming months. One month later, it’s our turn address our nation, the Victory beer nation. So here it is, short and sweet, our State of the Brewery…
In 2011, as you might expect from a brewery, we made a lot of beer. 81,341 barrels to be exact. That’s 22,516 more barrels than last year. And many of those barrels were filled with our new flagship brand, Headwaters Pale Ale.
The beer was named to pay homage to the pristine water we use in our beers. We decided to do our part to keep it clean by awarding the first-ever Headwaters Grant to the Guardians of the Brandywine. The release of Headwaters Pale Ale was so successful, that we actually ran out of the beer for just about a month. But never, fear! We got the hops we needed and have replenished the market and made dozens of water-related puns in the process.
As we scurried to keep up with the demand for Headwaters, the demand for our more-established flagship brands continued to grow. We had to make some difficult decisions in order to make the beer that our incredible fans demanded of us. In 2011, we stopped giving brewery tours and had to scale back production of a few brands.
We dreaded making those unpleasant announcements, but we made a choice to be transparent to our faithful followers and explain the choices we made. In that vein, we are doing our best to respond to all of your questions, comments and complaints thoughtfully and thoroughly. We heard you asking us to bottle our Root Beer, so we did! Then you complimented our homemade ice cream, so we made that available for take-out purchase as well. Keep those questions and comments coming. They keep us on our toes.
As we’ve gotten closer to reaching capacity and finding a way to expand our production, we’ve grown in other ways as well. We hired 17 new full-time employees, some of whom we’ve introduced you to over the year. As we’ve grown in beer production and employment, we’ve also been able to expand our charitable giving, donating more than $45,000 in beer, merchandise and money.
You don’t have to be a non-profit corporation to get goodies from Victory. We wanted to interact with our fans more, so we introduced the Inspired by Victory contest series and Friday Facebook Quizzes. It has been great hearing from many of you on a more regular basis, and we’ve awarded many cash prizes and plenty of Victory swag.
2011 was a very full year for us, and 2012 is shaping up to be no different. Our brewery schedule is maxed out, our event calendar is filling up and our heads are bursting with ideas for keeping it interesting for you.
Now, more than ever before, you can keep up with all of the Victory excitement. We just released a mobile app that will allow you to stay on top of our latest announcements, locate our beers and join in our events. We will continue to be candid about our plans here on the blog, and look forward to interacting with you even more on Facebook and Twitter.
We encourage you to keep up with us through any of those sources, but more importantly to keep drinking our beer!