Sierra Nevada Brewing announced in a press release yesterday that they will acquire 100% of Sufferfest Beer Company, stating “shared values, commitment to innovation, and common goals” as the foundation of the partnership.
Sierra Nevada is one of the largest craft breweries in the world, and has been a leader when it comes to industry collaboration, with massive projects like Beer Camp and Resilience IPA, but this is their first acquisition. Some other large craft breweries have begun acquiring smaller outfits. Most notably, Oskar Blues is part of the private-investor-funded CANarchy Collective, which has acquired a handful of breweries in the last few years to create a brewery collective.
Sufferfest launched in 2016, founded by a long distance runner who was looking for a healthier post-run beer. The brand quickly made a name for itself by producing a gluten-free, low calorie Kolsch (with bee pollen!) and a pale ale that used salt and black currant. They now have five beers in their lineup.
“Sufferfest represents an authentic and genuine platform for us to connect with more and different people,” said Sierra Nevada CEO Jeff White in the press release. “This isn’t something cooked up by an ad agency. Sufferfest is a group of tireless, deeply committed people who love to have fun. In other words, they feel like us.”
There are no details yet as to what this acquisition will mean for Sufferfest’s distribution, though I’d assume it’s likely to see a significant increase in the near future. Personally, I hope it means I’ll be able to get Sufferfest’s Fastest Known Time Pale Ale on the East Coast. Even though the company is only a few years old, they’ve been on the forefront of the “healthy beer” movement that seems to be taking hold, with more breweries producing lower-calorie or gluten-free beer. You can read our Q/A with Sufferfest’s founder here.