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Asheville Beer Week Symptomatic Of Booming Mountain Industry

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Asheville Beer Week
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Asheville Beer Week is held from May 26 until June 3 this year.

It's now Beer Week in Asheville--a city in Western North Carolina regularly voted "Beer City, U.S.A.".

But the event is just a small part of a burgeoning trade in the mountains, according to an analysis of the industry recently released by the Economic Development Coalition for Asheville-Buncombe County.

The report shows that the brewing industry contributed nearly $1 billion in overal output last year--just in the areas of Buncombe, Haywood, Henderson and Madison Counties, where the industry supports more than 2,500 jobs--a quarter of all brewing jobs in the state. There are more breweries in North Carolina than anywhere else in the south.

Outside of the counties highlighted in the report, the beer craze is taking hold in many mountain communities that were previously considered "dry" counties in recent years, such as Swain, Macon and Haywood Counties.

Back in Asheville, there are some 27 breweries or brewpubs in the city--or, on brewery for every 8,000 people. Most notably, craft brew giants New Belgium, Oskar Blues and Sierra Nevada opened up shop in the mountain area last year. 

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