Despite shifting tastes among millennials, beer remains the most popular alcoholic beverage in the United States. It is the drink of choice for 43% of Americans who drink, beating out wine at 32% and liquor at 20%. Beer makers shipped 26.4 gallons of beer per person per American adult in 2017.
Beer is, to many, an important part of America’s cultural legacy. The beverage is tied to some of the oldest businesses and brands in the nation. Some parts of the country take pride in the brews that come from their region, and those areas often happen to consume the drink with greater zest than those in other parts of the country.
In fact, beer consumption tends to vary considerably across the country. According to Beer Marketer’s Insights, a brewing industry trade publisher, shipments of beer per capita range from over 40 gallons in one state to less than 20 in another. Generally, residents of states in the Midwest tend to be the biggest beer drinkers, while residents of states in the Northeast and New England consume the least with a few notable exceptions. A few New England states are actually some of the biggest beer drinkers in the country.
Beer consumption differs from state to state not just because of cultural reasons, but also because of differences in purchasing laws and taxes.
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