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Understanding Brewery Insurance

Brewery insurance in Mercer Island, Seattle, Bellevue, Tacoma, Everett and all of Washington.

Everyone knows that there are a lot of breweries in Washington. Washington State is home to some of the nation’s most iconic breweries, but it also boasts dozens of smaller, more intimate local beer producers. And although customers might not be thinking about brewery insurance when they’re gathering the gang together to have a cold pint of All Day IPA or Canadian Breakfast Stout, the brewers in the back room definitely are.

Why do breweries need insurance? Brewers are subject to all kinds of potential problems and liabilities in their chosen business, including spoilage, recalls, injury and property damage. Although brewer insurance is certainly a type of business insurance, it is more complex because brewing, bottling, selling and serving alcoholic beverages carries a whole host of risks that other industries traditionally don’t. So brewers cannot simply purchase a commercial general liability policy and wash their hands of the situation: they need to seek advice from insurance experts about precisely which policies they should acquire in order to ensure they’re fully covered.

Craft brewery insurance usually begins with a general liability policy, and then there are several different directions that brewers can go from there. Coverage for equipment and machinery is a popular secondary policy. Whether you’re protecting your bottling machine, your casks and barrels, your fermentation devices or your wort chiller, the health of your equipment is crucial to the success of your business. A brewery can’t operate without ample quantities of beer!

Another type of policy that breweries in Washington literally cannot operate without is a liquor liability policy. Liquor liability insurance provides coverage to businesses that serve alcohol to the public, in the event that personal injury or property damage arises due to excessive or improper consumption of alcohol. It is a legal responsibility of every brewery operating in Washington to have this type of coverage, but even if it wasn’t, liquor liability is never a bad policy to have in your back pocket. Accident damages from drunk driving incidents have been paid by bars and breweries that lacked ample coverage. No bar should allow that to be how their business ends.

Insurance for breweries largely hinges on what the individual brewery wants to achieve and accomplish. The main reason for having a comprehensive brewery insurance package is to get rid of all potential gaps in coverage. How much does brewery insurance cost? It has to cost enough to cover all of your potential liabilities and protect your business from lawsuits or frivolous customer or employee legal action. That may involve purchasing a workers compensation package to ensure that any brewing, storage or bottling accidents cannot be used against your business in a court of law. It might also mean getting property insurance. Property insurance typically covers both the external structure, meaning the brewpub and brewing facility, and the materials and supplies within the structure itself. If one part of the supply chain breaks, for instance if the yeast that goes into the beer spoils, you could be in for some serious trouble. Luckily, some types of property insurance will help you get back on your feet without any major loss in revenue.

Micro brewery insurance is complicated. It is your responsibility as a brewer and a business owner to understand the risks involved in running a brewery, and to contact an experienced insurance provider for a brewery insurance estimate. If you go to our website or give us a call, we’ll be able to provide you with a brewery insurance quote that takes every aspect of your business into account and shows you the way to a life free from coverage gaps.

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