Our courses are offered 100% online in order to provide you with maximum flexibility to meet the demands of your busy schedule. Each online course is 8 weeks long. 

All courses offer weekly one-hour live sessions. Attendance is optional, and the sessions are recorded. Session days and times vary from semester to semester.

Offered: Fall and Spring

Fall Dates: October 25 – December 19, 2023
Spring Dates: March 20 – May 14, 2024
Course Tuition: $1495 ($1196 for Certificate Alumni,  Pink Boots Society, Home Brewers or Brewers Association Members Discount)
Course Duration: 8 weeks
Learning Format: Online

Instructors: Audra Gaiziunas and Josh Lance

Download a sample Brewery Finance and Accounting Syllabus

The Brewery Finance and Accounting course will provide participants with a strong financial foundation and understanding of craft beverage accounting concepts for those seeking management positions at their current brewing operation, or for those seeking to open their own brewery or cidery in the future. This class will introduce the necessary tools to create business plans and pro forma financial statements for those seeking to launch their own operation. It will progress into cost accounting concepts as they apply throughout the production process and conclude with a thorough overview of brewery financial accounting statements and reporting, including the balance sheet, income statement, and cash flows. Participants will walk away with the necessary financial knowledge and templates to improve existing operations, or to create a business plan for a new craft beverage entity.

Program Highlights

By the end of the course, participants will be able to:

  • Identify common financial issues and outline possible alternative courses of action.
  • Understand the components and basic structure of the pro forma financial statements.
  • Create a range of financial documents including: sources and uses statement, balance sheets, income statements, and statements of cash flow.
  • Utilize breakeven range/analysis and basic financial ratios.
  • Identify which combination of sources of financing best fit the brewery’s particular needs.
  • Examine cost accounting and assess direct vs. indirect costs, fixed vs. variable costs, and overhead.
  • Calculate the cost by batch of beer, track variances, and improve the gross margin.
  • Establish divisional accounting for accountability.
  • Improve existing brewery operations, or create a business plan for a new craft beverage entity.


Week 1: Top financial Mistakes/ The Importance of Finance in Craft Beer
Week 2: Business Plan
Week 3: Accounting Basics for Craft Breweries
Week 4: Financial Accounting I
Week 5: Financial Accounting II
Week 6: Cost Accounting Models I
Week 7: Cost Accounting Models II
Week 8: Financial Analysis

Offered: Fall and Spring

Spring Dates: January 17 – March 14, 2024
Course Tuition: $1495 ($1196 for Certificate Alumni, Pink Boots Society, Home Brewers or Brewers Association Members Discount)
Course Duration: 8 weeks
Learning Format: Online

Instructors: Nick Posloski, Steve Rockhold, Phil Leinhart, Oralee Corbett, Mike Gerhart, Mark Benzaquen and Rod Waite

Download a sample Business Operations in Craft Beer Syllabus

In the Business Operations Track, you’ll learn about how the many components of craft brewery operations and supply chain must fit together to build a profitable, efficient, and sustainable business. Students will address key topics such as sourcing and procurement, quality systems, new brewery start-up and capacity planning, forecasting, production planning, inventory, logistics, and environmental sustainability.

UVM has partnered with Ekos Brewmaster, the industry leading software solution for managing the business side of your brewery.  We integrate the Ekos software into each of our learning modules, so that you will benefit from using the software in real world case studies.  Whether you are looking to be hired by a brewery or start your own brewery, knowledge of how to use Ekos, combined with the practical understanding of brewery operations, will help you to run a more efficient and effective business so that you can be more successful.

Participants will examine

  • Making Craft Beer
  • Sourcing, Procurement and Receiving Materials
  • Forecasting and Inventory Management
  • Quality, Maintenance, Utilities and Safety
  • Environmental Sustainability and Enabling Systems
  • Overview of Craft Brewery Planning Processes:
    • Long-term Planning I – Location and Design
    • Long-term Planning II – Capacity
    • Mid-term Planning – Demand Planning
    • Short-term – Operations Planning and Scheduling
  • Operations and Supply Chain Risk Management – Assessment, Mitigation and Contingency Planning
  • Human Resources and Staffing considerations


Week 1:  Brewery Operations and Supply Chain Fundamentals
Week 2:  The Brewing Process and Required Resources/Ekos Brewmaster: Setting Up Your Brewery
Week 3:  Long Term Planning – Building a Craft Brewery, Considerations, Location, Sizing, and Capacity
Week 4: Sourcing, Procurement and Receiving Materials
Week 5: Demand Management -Forecasting, Inventory: Receiving and Shipping
Week 6: Mid and Short Term Planning and Scheduling
Week 7: Quality
Week 8: Maintenance, Utilities, Environmental Sustainability

Offered: Summer

Summer Dates: August 9 – October 3, 2023
Course Tuition: $1495 ($1196 for Certificate Alumni and/or Brewers Association Members Discount)
Course Duration: 8 weeks
Learning Format: Online

Instructors: Julie Rhodes and Emily Hutto

Download a sample Brewery Marketing and Promotion in the Digital Age Syllabus

Both the marketing landscape and the culture of craft beer have evolved significantly over the past decade. An informed brewery marketing department will take an omnichannel approach (both digital and physical) to building brand awareness and fostering long-term relationships with today’s craft beer consumers. Digital channels lead the way for breweries to connect and engage with their audiences due to ease of access and cost efficiencies. They allow breweries to build larger, more targeted, and highly-engaged fan bases for less money. Combining digital tactics with traditional marketing methods, like print advertising or event sponsorships, is the most effective way to build brand awareness for your craft beer.

The biggest challenge that today’s breweries face is that digital marketing is fast-paced and often confusing. This online course focuses on introducing the craft beer professional to a breadth of core and emerging marketing channels and disciplines. Students will learn the holistic value of creating a clear digital marketing plan, how to determine the ROI (return on investment) of various digital marketing strategies and channels, the tools to support their efforts, and the skills to evaluate and refine results. Understanding the interconnected value of various marketing channels will set you apart from other beer professionals and set up a solid foundation for your marketing plans for years to come.

Course Objectives

By the end of the course, students will be able to:

  • Create their own strategic marketing plan and identify goals for a digital marketing program based on an awareness of key trends within the craft beer and digital marketing landscape
  • Understand how to brand their business and what should be included in a brand folder
  • Identify their phase of the product life cycle to determine overall marketing objectives, plus understand consumer purchasing behavior
  • Assess a website’s ability to rank well in terms of SEO and create a website optimization plan
  • Create effective social media and PPC ads, and identify the best places to “place” craft beer ads with effective audience targeting techniques
  • Develop an email marketing campaign, and know how utilize segmentation and sequences
  • Maximize the impact of each social media channel, learn how to create a content calendar, and identify ways to improve their sales conversion copywriting skills
  • Identify different types of content and various digital channels for distribution, and evaluate why each one may, or may not, work for their brewery
  • Develop strategies for online consumer engagement, dealing with negative consumer feedback, and practice using these instances as opportunities for improvement
  • Know how to create and track a marketing budget based on marketing objectives
  • Increase awareness of legalities around advertising and marketing beers and breweries
  • Use analytics to improve their digital marketing strategies, efficiencies and content


Week 1: (re)Branding

Week 2: Understanding Marketing Processes and Objectives

Week 3: Discovering Your Target Audience

Week 4: Identifying Marketing Strategies & Channels

Week 5: Content Planning & Scheduling

Week 6: Email Marketing

Week 7: SEO and Web Presence

Week 8: Marketing Analytics

Offered: Summer

Dates: August 16 – October 10, 2023

Course Tuition: $1495 ($1196 for Certificate Alumni and/or Brewers Association Members Discount)
Course Duration: 8 weeks
Learning Format: Online

Instructors: Kary Shumway and Jon Reynolds

Download a sample Distribution and Sales in Craft Beer Syllabus

This course focuses on the various strategies and tactics required to sell beer and promote a brewery’s brand. With the growth of taprooms as a focus for many breweries, we will also examine how to maximize revenue opportunities and engagement with customers. Whether you are planning a brewery or a career in beer sales, this course provides essential details to gain success in today’s crowded retail market.


  • Exploring the full sales landscape including how the three-tier system impacts the sale of beer, understanding the buyer/seller landscape, modeling the sales forecast, and increasing its accuracy
  • Understanding the margin structure for beer pricing
  • Examining a range of sales techniques to handle retailer objections, gain the retailer buy-in, and close the sale.
  • Building a successful relationship with your distributor and how this relationship informs the sales process
  • Maximizing taproom sales
  • The sales process for breweries who elect to self-distribute
  • How VIP and Ekos Brewmaster can assist in the sales process


Week 1: Industry Trends and the Three-Tier System
Week 2: Beer Pricing and Packaging Trends
Week 3: Distribution Part 1: Partnering with a Distributor
Week 4: Distribution Part 2: Self-Distribution
Week 5: The Buyer/Seller Landscape in Beer Sales
Week 6: Sales Techniques and Gaining Distributor Buy-in
Week 7: Maximizing Sales, Forecasting, and Evaluation Tools
Week 8: Category Management

Offered: Fall and Spring

Fall Dates: TBD
Spring Dates: February 21 – April 16, 2024
Course Tuition: $1495 ($1196 for Certificate Alumni,  Pink Boots Society, Home Brewers or Brewers Association Members Discount)
Course Duration: 8 weeks
Learning Format: Online

Instructors: Mike Kallenberger and Bob Russell

Download a sample Marketing and Branding Your Brewery Syllabus

As competition within the beer industry continues to grow, branding and marketing play an even greater role in ensuring a brewery’s success. While it is important to make great beer, in today’s landscape you also need to know how to build your brand, establish a compelling “WHY” and effectively market your brand and products. This course will address key industry trends, identify “best-practices” in differentiating your brewery, reveal how to build a solid branding and marketing plan, and demonstrate how to measure success and plan for the future.

Participants will examine

  • Key opportunities and challenges in today’s beer/beverage marketplace
  • The craft beer drinker and his/her motivations
  • The role that marketing, branding and sales play and how they are interconnected
  • Basic requirements of a successful business/marketing plan
  • Positioning strategy in detail and how it influences all brewery decisions
  • Choices a new brewery faces in terms of packaging, distribution and pricing
  • How the principles of positioning and branding have been successfully applied to specific objectives (i.e. naming, rebranding, portfolio selection, taproom/brewery design)
  • How a brewery successfully promotes its brand and products
  • How events, sponsorships and promotions help to build valuable connections to the consumer audience
  • How to decide between self-distribution and a wholesaler partnership and the key criteria within each
  • How to evaluate the performance of marketing and branding activities
  • How to incorporate key findings into a marketing plan


Week 1: Trends in The U.S. Beer Market
Week 2: Trends in The Craft Category
Week 3: Basics of Marketing and Branding
Week 4: Brand Positioning Strategy
Week 5: Branding Examples (Part One)
Week 6: Branding Examples (Part Two)
Week 7: Marketing Execution
Week 8: Measurement and Research

We also offer FREE add-ons to help you succeed in the industry after you complete 3 courses You can choose one or both of these options.

  • Capstone Project (present your project to our instructor team of industry experts)
  • Cicerone Certification (which gives you access to one of their BeerSavvy Courses)

2023 Course Schedule


Course Summer 2023 Session Fall 2023 Session Spring 2024 Session
Brewery Finance and Accounting 10/25/23 – 12/19/23 3/20/24 – 5/14/24
Business Operations in Craft Beer 1/17/24 – 3/14/24
Brewery Marketing and Promotion in the Digital Age 8/9/23 – 10/3/23
Distribution and Sales in Craft Beer 8/16/23 – 10/10/23
Marketing and Branding Your Brewery 10/4/23 – 11/28/23 2/21/24 – 4/16/24
Capstone Project 11/15/23 – 12/12/23 (Invitation Only) 5/8/24 – 6/4/24 (Invitation Only)

Optional and Free Add-On Services:


Capstone Project (optional 3-5 week course after completing 3 courses)

Offered in the Fall and Spring

Current dates:

  • Spring: May 8 – June 4
  • Fall: November 15 – December 12

Business of Craft Beer participants complete a culminating 4-week capstone project after the completion of your three courses. This will give you an opportunity to apply your learning to create a business plan or a product launch plan that will prove useful as you embark on your new career. You will have the opportunity to present your project to our instructor team including craft beer industry leaders for critique and feedback. Select one of two capstone projects.

Craft Brewery Business Plan
Create a comprehensive business plan tying together the knowledge and skills gained from the program. Create a presentation providing an overview of your craft brewery business plan to your team of instructors.

Product Launch Challenge
Create a new product launch plan for an existing brewery, or a fictional brewery. In this challenge select a new craft product for a brewery to add to their portfolio with supporting rationale. This challenge aligns with beer styles, branding, legal, digital media, and distribution weeks and will require a comprehensive application of each of these components.

Value add – Cicerone® Certification Program

We have collaborated with the Cicerone® Certification Program, a recognized leader in providing training and certifications in preparing you to elevate the beer experience for consumers. When you enroll in our Business of Craft Beer courses, you can choose to enroll in Level 1 or Level 2 at no additional cost.

Level 1 Cicerone® Certified Beer Server ($200 value)
Become knowledgeable about beer service and beer styles through Cicerone’s online BeerSavvy® course, which will prepare you to pass the Certified Beer Server Exam, a recognized industry credential. The online course takes about 5-10 hours and you can complete it anytime at no additional cost when you are enrolled in a Business of Craft Beer course.

Level 2 Certified Cicerone® Exam Prep Course Books ($200 value)
You will have access to any 2 of the 4 Certified Cicerone® exam prep books at no additional cost. Written by Cicerone®, the official course books cover a wide range of material from beer history to brewing techniques and service issues. They will prepare you to pass the industry-recognized Cicerone® exam. Each book also includes six months of access to the online forums and an online quiz to test your knowledge in preparation for the exam.