MillerCoors announced yesterday they will be closing the Eden, NC plant next year. In 2014 the Miller plant in Eden brewed 7.1 million barrels of beer. Think about that minute, that is 220.1 million gallons of beer. To accomplish that task they utilized 550 employees. With 520 people unemployed when the brewery closes the doors next year and Rockingham county running at 7% unemployment (3K people) that may drive the unemployment number to over 8% and if other businesses in the area have layoffs as a result of the closing it could be disastrous for the small town. Ball Corp makes the glass and cans and employs 183 nearby. I even wonder about the farmers who undoubtedly receive the spent grain. If we assume it takes 1.5 pounds of malt per gallon of beer that would be 330 million pounds of dry spent grain per year. This is going to be a huge blow to the economy of that area and I don’t see someone coming in and taking over to brew on that scale.
What really ticks me off is the snowjob from Tim Kent of the NC Wine & Beer Wholesalers. He rallied the people at Miller to join him against some good legislation for craft brewers with the promise that would protect their jobs. The legislation of course was killed and ultimately all those he promised will soon be looking for other suitable employment. Way to go Timmay, you seem like a heck of a human being, I hope you are proud of what you accomplished.