Offered fully online, our courses provide participants with the essential business skills needed to be successful in today’s craft beer industry.
Today’s craft beer industry is increasingly competitive leading to new challenges for new brewery owners. The key to launching and running a successful brewery in this environment is to develop a strong business foundation. Our program offers industry knowledge in brewery finance, beer sales, social media promotion, marketing, branding, operations, and distribution.
Participants may also elect to take individual courses without enrolling in the full certificate program. See our program curriculum for details.
Key features of the Business of Craft Beer Professional Certificate program:
Take Advantage of Fully Online Courses
Flexible online courses allow participants the opportunity to balance career, family, and other obligations.
Learn from Industry Experts
All instructors and guest speakers are industry professionals who offer valuable craft beer insights.
Gain Real World Knowledge
Join online courses featuring industry scenarios, interactive discussions, all supported by top craft beer experts.
Choose Your Path
Whether your goal is to transfer skills to work for a brewery or distributor (craft beer sales, marketing, or operations), or start your own brewery, select courses to best serve your goals.
Expand Your Network
The certificate and courses are a great way to network with other entrepreneurial-minded professionals who are passionate about the craft beer industry.
VA Benefit Eligible
The University of Vermont is able to certify VA benefits for the Business of Craft Beer Professional Certificate program. Read more information regarding VA benefits.
Business of Craft Beer Alumnus and Facilitator David Kennedy Talks About the Comprehensive Business Education from UVM
At Program Completion
Upon completion of this program, participants will be able to create an actionable business plan appropriate for their future goals. The plan may include: marketing, financial expectations and pro formas, brewery sizing and operations, distribution, and/or sales strategies. Brewery business plans may be submitted for critical review by our beer industry experts. See Capstone Project for further details.
Student Success Stories
Before working in beer, my background was very sports heavy as I worked for a handful of professional and collegiate teams. I’m confident that having UVM’s Business of Craft Beer professional certificate on my resume assisted with catching eyes during the interview process as well as preparing me for the industry. I chose the Sales and Social Media track which gave me experiences key to succeeding in a role involving communication about products, brand story, etc. I’m grateful for my experience with UVMs BCB program – the lecturers, professors, and career coaching were all extremely beneficial. As the seventh largest craft brewing company in the U.S., Craft Brew Alliance is a leader in brewing, branding, and bringing to market some of the world’s best-loved American craft beers. Today, our distinctive portfolio combines the power of Kona Brewing Company, a dynamic national craft beer brand, with strong regional breweries and innovative lifestyle brands, Appalachian Mountain Brewery, Cisco Brewers, Omission Brewing Co., Redhook Brewery, Square Mile Cider Co., Widmer Brothers Brewing, and Wynwood Brewing Co. CBA is headquartered in Portland, Oregon and operates breweries and brewpubs across the U.S. CBA beers are available in all 50 U.S. states and 30 different countries around the world.Abby Bruins, Brewery Representative
Colorado, Craft Brew Alliance
UVM’s Business of Craft Beer Program taught me so much about how to properly market, organize, and successfully run a brewery’s brand, social media, and online presence. When I took over as marketing manager our Instagram page had 26.5k followers and within about a year and a half we’re at 42k followers with higher rates of daily engagement and some of the highest impression rates we’ve ever had. Not only that, but I gained a lot of valuable skills that I can apply to other departments of Highland Park Brewery that I manage as well, like sales and distribution and event/festival coordination. We’ve opened a second location with a proper taproom in the Chinatown neighborhood of Los Angeles not too far from Dodger Stadium and Downtown LA, we also just celebrated our 5th anniversary back in March. We focus on just about every style, hoppy, lots of lagers, mixed culture, and stouts. If you’re ever in L.A., be sure to swing by! Cheers!James Sullivan, Marketing Manager
Highland Park Brewery, Los Angeles, CA
Beginning in 2016, I started Hawksbill Brewing Company, LLC, a 5-barrel craft microbrewery located in downtown Luray, VA. The brewery’s motto is “Grown here, brewed here,” because we frequently use locally produced ingredients – sometimes including our own hops – in our beers. In 2015, I established Hawksbill Hop Yards, LLC, a 1-acre hop farm in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley. The work includes planning, operations, finance, and marketing, along with field work: planting, harvesting, and drying the hops. We produced Cascade hops for Hawksbill Brewing, Stone Brewing in Richmond, and five other Virginia breweries. I had already started the brewery when I joined the program at UVM on the recommendation of a friend. All of the courses I took – distribution, operations, and finance, not to mention the business plan capstone – gave me great perspective on what I was experiencing in the business, and a solid foundation to build our venture. As we prepare to scale up in the next 18 months, I’ll be putting what I learned at UVM to good use!Jim Turner, Owner
Hawksbill Brewing Company, LLC, Luray, VA
Faces Brewing Co. is a 300-person restaurant and brewery opening in Massachusetts later this year. Located in a restored bank in downtown Malden, Faces boasts both a full kitchen and liquor license, allowing us to serve American gastropub fare, as well as wine, craft cocktails, and a rotating selection of local beers on tap. A ten barrel system supplies our taproom with a wide array of freshly brewed beers, available on draught and for carry-out in 32 ounce crowlers. The Business of Craft Beer program offered at University of Vermont helped us understand the emerging trends within our industry. This base of knowledge allowed us to design a more effective business model as we launched Faces Brewing Co. Through the identification of our consumers’ needs and a heightened understanding of craft beer’s changing landscape, we strategically positioned Faces Brewing Co. to offer a unique and unmatched customer experience.Dan Martignetti
Faces Brewing Co., Malden, MA
Anawan Brewing Company is a 100% veteran-owned nano brewery-in-planning opening in Rehoboth, Massachusetts in Spring 2020. We have received our Brewer’s Notice from the Federal TTB last month and are in the process of state and local permitting. The brewery-in-planning consists of myself as the founder/owner and Dan DiRienzo as the head brewer. Anawan Brewing’s mission is to bring the local community together through classic beer styles with a unique-independent twist. When people think of the name Anawan Brewing Company we want them to think Independent, Handcrafted, and Local.
The Business of Craft Beer Certificate program at UVM prepared me significantly for every step of the brewery in planning process thus far. From startup capital and crowdfunding, all the way to distribution systems, I believe UVM’s program has provided me with the knowledge to feel confident in taking the leap from a home brewery to commercial brewery.Steffen S. Johnson, Founder/Owner
Anawan Brewing Company, Rehoboth, MA