State of Northwest Cider 2016

Industry Experts Release Northwest Cider Survey

A first-of-its kind collaboration between the NW Cider Association, Portland State University’s “Business of Craft Brewing Program” and Irvine & Co. CPAs bears some noteworthy fruit you may want to chew on.

Linked here you will find the first annual 2015 State of the Industry Annual Report. Intended to shed light on this rapidly growing and relatively young industry, these experts worked throughout 2015 to survey Northwest cidermakers to uncover results and data of use to media, cidermakers and interested stakeholders. The results are juicy. 

Make sure to read the full report for detail on hot topics such regarding growers, production, revenue and more. Note that data listed references the 2014 production and growing year. A few highlights include:

  • When it comes to revenue and growth, the larger a producer becomes, the more heavily they rely on sales through distributors. Smaller producers have the most even mix of sales across channels. Average annual sales were $96,250 for small producers, $1,044,000 for medium producers and more than $1,860,000 for the largest operations.

  • It’s no surprise that the majority of cider was produced using apples as the major ingredient for flavor. Yet 41 percent was mixed with fruit or other flavorings and Perry (fermented pear juice) accounted for 7 percent of production.

  • When it comes to estate-grown ciders, the results vary by production levels. Seventy percent of the small producers (0-20,000 gallons/year) who responded grew at least some of their own fruit while 33 percent of medium producers (20-100,000 gallons/year) and 44 percent of large operations (100,000+) grew their own.

  • In terms of percentage of total gallons of cider sold, Oregon and Washington were the leading distribution areas in 2014, followed by Canada and the California.

Plans are currently underway for a second annual survey so we can stay abreast of needs and trends. With increased survey participation in the future we can provide better, more tailored reporting. Please direct any comments, questions or suggestions to Eric Jorgenson, NWCA Vice President of the Board eric@finnriverfarm.com.