Don’t lager drinkers deserve a choice of great styles in the way that ale drinkers do? That’s the question that got the founders of Devon’s Utopian Brewing on the road to setting up their new business.
Now, the company is ready to launch from its farm base, and is crowdfunding to raise £350,000 of investment, representing 19.07% equity in the business.
In their pitch, the team say: “We believe lager drinkers have been largely bypassed by the craft brewing ‘revolution’. We can see no reason that they don’t crave the more interesting, quality products from independent producers just like the IPA drinkers, and we intend to help redress the balance by creating a range of interesting but accessible craft lagers.”
The funding will enable the construction of a 3,500-litre brewhouse with sufficient vessels to produce more than 8,000 hectolitres per annum. The aim is to install sufficient infrastructure and to have space to add vessels later, to increase production to more than 15,000hl a year. The 10,000 square feet site will also include a visitor centre and café.
Although lagers are often associated with continental brewers, the ingredients for Utopian’s beers will be British — not just the malt, but the hops, too.
The pitch adds: “To assist our sustainability ambitions, our proposed site benefits from a natural water source and access to cattle waste, a suitable feed source for anaerobic digestion, which will contribute to power generation along with potential solar panels.
“We aim to sell draught product to pubs and bars locally and through national distribution. We have provisionally agreed to supply for 15 sites and we believe our industry contacts will give us a head start in rapidly adding new outlets. We plan for a packaged product to be added asap for both online and retail sales.”
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